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6G C 9C S 17 L 23 F 33

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 3

The 2010 Holiday Book is a publication of the Loveland Reporter-Herald.



For advertising information, contact ad director Linda Story at 970-635-3614 or For editorial information, e-mail special sections editor Jade Cody at, or reporter Jennifer Lehman at



ALSO INSIDE Last minute gift ideas.......................... pg. 5 HDTV without the headaches .......... pg. 10 Choosing an iPod.............................. pg. 16 Move with new video games ............ pg. 14 Match earphones to your needs....... pg. 20 Updated old-fashioned games ......... pg. 25 High-tech upgrades for the home .... pg. 27 3D gaming with the Nintendo 3Ds... pg. 29 Vamp up the holidays....................... pg. 35 Eco-wise gifts .................................... pg. 37 Old-fashioned toys are back ............. pg. 40


Gifts for gear heads ........................... pg. 42 Latest technology for reading ........... pg. 43 iPad accessories ................................ pg. 44 Personalize gifts ................................ pg. 47 Grandma wants quality time............ pg. 49 Gifts to inspire health........................ pg. 50 Luxurious gifts................................... pg. 51 The year’s best children’s books....... pg. 53 Top 10 DVDs ..................................... pg. 54 Homemade gifts from the kitchen ... pg. 55 Gift wrapping tips ............................. pg. 57

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

Really fantastic gift advice

ous and don’t want to get her a present? Hmmmm? JC: What a great question. Here is how it translates without the bologna: A boy lives across the country, and you want him to love you — not her. Let’s be real. If you really wanted to money to spend on my girlfriend, JADE CODY be his platonic friend, you would SPECIAL SECTIONS EDITOR Kim, for her birthday present, so I want to be her friend, too. And put RID: My boyfriend and I have been yourself in her shoes: would you want had to get creative. I made her a together for about three months. We some girl across the country sending scavenger hunt with a lot of smaller ellow Thursday is here. Do not presents and a home-cooked meal of are both in our early 20s and the rela- gifts to your man on Christmas? If waste another minute. You tionship is pretty new, so I don’t want you really aren’t romantically interking crab (outright lie — the crab need to skim through this holito go overboard with something suwas takeout). For fun I threw in a ested in him, send a heart-felt Christday book, make a list and organize a per expensive. But at the same time, mas card with a gift certificate to the mushy poem I wrote and a plastic mission for Black tomorrow. I want to let him know that I care. “probably ring” — which is less serimovies for both of them. Show the I am a gift advisor. It is what I was What should I get him? ous than a promise ring, but much new girlfriend that you support her born to do. If you have gift-giving JC: A kid. better than a “I think you’re great.” and their relationship. questions, feel free to contact me at What better to give a new mate If you’re bent on trying to split Anyway, the point is to get creative. any time by either blowing into a than the gift of a joyous child? Kids them up, however, what you need is a Give your kids something thing they seashell (turtle shells will substitute) come in a range of sizes and shapes, good airport movie scene — comcan do together, such as a basketball or typing up an e-mail. and they even have their own mini plete with a running hug at the or the dirty dishes. Or, to add a little No, I don’t have a lot of gift-giving personalities. Plus, children’s accesterminal and some flowers. spark to their holiday season, sell experience, nor do I hold any imporsories are widely available, so have their old toys on eBay and use the tant academic accolades beyond a RID: My brother chooses not to some fun mixing and matching each liberal arts bachelor’s degree. Howev- money to get new gifts. Recycling is a child to reflect your own personality. participate in the gift giving aspect of er, I was in my school’s gifted and tal- good lesson to learn, and they will Christmas and more or less refuses to If they’re out of kids, use your ented program from grades K-6, so, I start seriously fearing you, which is accept gifts given to him. How should imagination and get him something think that pretty much qualifies me. I also important in your child rearing we approach this during the holidays? special like tickets to a sporting did run out of gifts and talents in sev- journey. JC: Wow. What kind of gifts have event, a really great belt buckle/belt enth grade, though, and I was no combo or maybe a tickets to see a co- you guys been giving him? I’ve heard RID: My little girl is obsessed with longer able to remain in the proof bad gifts, but sheesh. Whatever it median at Comedy Works in Denver Silly Bandz to the point where she gram, so read at your own risk. was, you managed to extinguish his coupled with a night at a downtown has hundreds of them. The thought Anyway, I’m an expert. Go with it. holiday spirit. And you have to help hotel (I think that’s where they sell of giving her more makes me nauLet’s answer a few questions. him get it back with a holiday interseous. How do I deny her Silly Bandz kids). vention. You will need a Santa suit, Reader in Distress (RID): My hus- without ruining her Christmas? She RID: One of my best male friends six elves, a small newborn baby, severhas her heart set on them. band got laid off three months ago, lives across the country, and I wanted al religious people, a fruit cake ... JC: Since when does parenting inand money has been very tight. We to get him something for Christmas. volve making children happy or givhave three kids, and we want to give RID: I need some ideas for my He just moved in with a new girlthem a very special Christmas — but ing them things they want? friend and I have yet to meet her. Ev- company’s white elephant gift exwithout racking up a ton of credit Imagine the gifts that you loved ery time I’m in the city she’s busy. Do change. Any suggestions? card debt that we can’t pay back. when you were her age. If you’re I have to get something for both of JC: Two words: Shake Weight. I acWhat should we do? imagining Dominos and Jacks ... them? Will she get jealous if I get tually stole this one from Kim, who is something just for him — non-roplanning this for her own party. I just JC: I can relate to this question. A then never mind. Those games are mantic of course? Am I secretly jeal- think it’s hilarious. few months ago, I didn’t have a lot of horrible. Try something that feeds creativity, like a craft set, an electronic diary or a musical instrument and some lessons. Give her a gift that will help shape her life. Winning points with young children is a lot like winning a foot race against your grandma: Yeah, you might have won ... but it’s your grandma, man. Who really cares?


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Last-Minute Gift Ideas Pressed for time? Here are some quick and easy gifts

be found in the eleventh hour.

ADULTS • Visit the local liquor store for a bottle of wine in the price METRO CREATIVE SERVICES range desired. Wrap it in a wine bag or leave it as is with a nice bow. he Christmas countdown • Pick up passes to a has begun, and the days will local attraction, such no doubt fly off the calendar as an amusement park like they do every year. or a museum. Put toThose who haven’t yet started gether tickets for a shopping may feel pressed for play paired with a time and worry that they will not soundtrack of the probe able to find gifts for everyone duction. on their lists — at least gifts that • Food is often don’t look like they were afappreciated. A box terthoughts. But good gifts can of fine chocolates or

one of those edible fruit arrangements will be a tasteful, and tasty, gift. • Fill a large bowl with a scooper, sprinkles, cherries, and other toppings for making ice cream sundaes. • Pick a gift that embraces the holiday spirit. Holiday music, ornaments or table decorations can be used this year or next.

puzzles. A subscription to a children’s magazine would also work, seeing as children love getting mail. • Few kids will turn down a DVD of their favorite television characters. The DVDs should feature an age-appropriateness rating to make choosing one even easier.

CHILDREN • Pop into a toy store or a department store and pick up a cuddly stuffed animal. • Buy an art set for older children, full of paints and markers. If a complete set can’t be found, make an art package with a bunch of supplies packed into a gift bag. • Choose an educational gift that is still fun, like alphabet flash cards or

• Teenagers can be finicky, so a monetary gift will be one-size-fitsall. • Teenage girls may appreciate a gift basket of delicious scented lotions. • Passes for movies can make date night less expensive. • Consider a gift card or e-gift coupon for digital music downloads. • Give a subscription to a teen magazine so that everyone can keep abreast of their favorite celebrities.


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Barbie Video Girl



Paper Jamz guitars

Here are a few of the hottest toys of 2010 ANDREA CHANG LA TIMES



or parents, finding the right holiday toy isn’t all fun and games. After a robotic hamster became the breakout hit last Christmas, the race is on to snag this year’s hot toy. But what is it? No front runner has emerged yet, but parents and kids have been buzzing about squishy pencil toppers, a Barbie equipped with a real video camera and toy musical instruments that can be played by lightly touching the paper surface.

“Part of what makes a toy the musthave toy is the scarcity in finding it,” said Sean McGowan, a toy analyst at Needham & Co. “There’s social currency attached to being the parent who can deliver it and the kid who gets it.”

Mattel Inc.'s Monster High dolls

Toys may be a bright spot during what is predicted to be another tough holiday season for consumer spending. Compared with other retail categories such as luxury and electronics, toys weren’t hit as hard during the economic downturn for one major reason: Many parents will cut back everywhere else before they deprive their children of that Buzz Lightyear action figure or the latest Bratz doll. Plus, toys are relatively cheap. For those who haven’t started shopping, prepare yourselves for bigger toy displays, more pop-up shops and better discounts as retailers boldly move into their most important time of the year. Many toys are priced around the sweet spot of $30. Discount giant Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has expanded its toy assortment and inventory and added “Rollback Alley” to most stores, an aisle that features deals on toys. Toys “R’’ Us Inc. will operate 600 temporary holiday shops and 10 FAO Schwarz pop-up stores nationwide. Target Corp. is featuring 10 percent more discounts and items in its annual holiday toy catalog. And

Sears, which last year brought back in-store toy sections to 20 of its department stores, is opening 79 more this year. Because price will again be the most important factor for many shoppers, toy manufacturers have focused on making products that can fit into small budgets. Experts are predicting a strong year for “mini-collectibles” — toys that are inexpensive but feature a full lineup of characters with different looks, sounds and personalities. The collectibles category has performed extremely well in the tough economic climate, with Zhu Zhu Pets, a line of robotic hamsters, and Bakugan Battle Brawlers, an assortment of spherical, spring-loaded miniature

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 7 toys, flying off shelves. 1990s. In recent years, the fashion This year’s newcomers are doll category has become led by Squinkies, soft and highly competitive thanks to squishy figures that can be worn as jewelry, used as pen- a growing number of plastic figures with diverse images cil toppers or displayed in and personalities, whether play sets; Zoobles, plastic spheres that pop open when cute, sporty, scholarly, glamorous or edgy. placed in their “happitats” This holiday season, new to reveal characters inside; players such as Mattel Inc.’s Sing-a-ma-jigs, plush creaMonster High — a line of tures that sing, harmonize and chatter with one anoth- characters, such as Frankie Stein and Dracuer; and Hot laura, who are Wheels R/C the offspring of Stealth Rides, famous monsters mini-vehicles — and the rethat fold flat inlaunch of the side cell-phonesaucy Bratz dolls size cases that Hot Wheels R/C by rival MGA Endouble as retertainment Inc. mote controls. Stealth Rides are heating up For parents, the closely watched battle. they are an economical choice, said Lydia Ho, a stayat-home mom from Rolling Hills Estates. Her 8-year-old daughter, Elizabeth, particularly enjoys Silly Bandz, colorful rubber bands molded in different shapes; a pack costs just a few dollars. “It’s easy — it’s not an investment if they lose it or it breaks,” said Ho, 43. Toy experts say collectibles appeal to kids, who like to accumulate different characters and trade them with friends. Owning the most items can be a status symbol, such as with the Beanie Babies phenomenon in the

Fashion dolls are always popular among girls, who like to emulate their favorites and dress them up in cool outfits and accessories, retail experts said. A trend within the category this year is the popularity of larger, 18-inch dolls (Barbie is 11.5 inches tall), which girls find more relatable, they said. At a Toys “R’’ Us Express to redeem a birthday gift card, 8-year-old Elena Wingard passed by the smaller dolls, instead opting for a Dream Dazzlers styling head. The large doll came with an array of hair accessories, as well as makeup, which Elena said she was excited to apply to the doll’s face. Her other favorite dolls are Amer-



Silly Bandz

ican Girl, another brand that features largersize characters. “It seems like it’s my friend,” she said of larger dolls. “It feels more real to me for some reason because it looks like a real person.” The frontrunners among the large-scale dolls: Disney Princess & Me dolls, which cost $49.99, and BFC, Ink dolls, which cost $29.99. The economy hasn’t been kind to the youth electronics sector, with U.S. sales falling 29 percent year-over-year for the 12-month period that ended in September, according to market research firm NPD Group. But toy makers are betting big on the high-tech category for the holidays, rolling out a wide selection of elec-

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tronic toys that have been generating buzz for months. This year’s top picks include Mattel’s $49.99 Barbie Video Girl, which features a working video camera embedded in the doll’s necklace and a color LCD video screen on her back; Paper Jamz, thin toy guitars and drums that can be played by simply touching the paper surface; and Dance Star Mickey, a plush Mickey Mouse from Fisher-Price that walks, talks and does dances (including the moonwalk).

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Manufacturers have also added more technology to the learning tools category, developing several toys that look remarkably like adults’ iPads and Kindles. Hand-held gadgets such as Vtech’s V. Reader, Fisher-Price’s iXL Learning System and LeapFrog’s Leapster Explorer Learning Experience use technology to help kids read, play games and learn other tasks. “Kids today are Skyping, they’re on the Internet, they’re going on YouTube,” said Neil Friedman, president of Mattel Brands. “And what we’re doing is we’re allowing them to expand their imaginations and utilize their toys to even go further.” Not surprisingly, the prices in this category are a bit higher, with Dance Star Mickey retailing at $69.99 and the iXL at $79.99. Just as Hollywood filmmakers have seen success in adapting comic book characters into major movie franchises, the toy industry has benefited from crafting toys tied to an existing brand. It’s already been a big year for movie-related toys with the release of the blockbusters “Toy Story 3” and “Iron Man 2“: Boys flocked to toy stores to pick up action figures, vehicles and games. Those entertainment properties are expected to continue to be big sellers during the holidays. For girls, the Disney Princess line is expected to sell well. The release this month of Disney’s animated movie “Tangled,” based on the story of Rapunzel, has brought a host of products including dolls, a hair braider and a fairytale tower. Kids like toy products linked to popular movies and television shows because they feel more familiar with the characters, said Margaret Whitfield, a toy analyst at Sterne Agee. The recession brought about the trend of “cocooning,” where families tended to forgo dining out and taking expensive vacations in favor of staying home. That led to a boost in classic family activities such as board games, arts and crafts, building sets and outdoor toys, which are expected to be popular again this year. After the holidays last year, Denise Vazquez, 41, and her family

Vtech’s V. Reader pooled together their Christmas money to buy a Nintendo Wii video game console “so we could all play as a family,” she said. This year, she’ll be looking for more Wii games and other familyfriendly activities that won’t break the bank, she said. The Torrance, Calif., resident, who works as an accounts representative at a bank, plans to buy a lot of toys at Kmart and Sears so she can use the stores’ layaway programs. “With a large family, you have to remind yourself to budget,” she said. “We don’t want to deprive the kids, but we have to be more conscious.” With U.S. retail sales totaling $21.5 billion last year, toys are big business — especially during the final months of the year. For major chains, the aggressive stance on toys this year is part of a larger strategy to drive traffic to other store sections, said Sherif Mityas, a partner in the retail practice of management consulting firm A.T. Kearney. Retail watchers are predicting only a modest increase in sales for the holidays, so merchants need any edge they can get as they try to woo tough customers. “Retailers have conditioned the consumer to really wait and buy on deals,” Mityas said. “So if they can draw consumers in by giving deals on toys, then they’re hoping they can sell other products in the store at potentially more full price.” Merchants, too, admitted that toys are a smart bet. “It’s a tough economy and we know our customers are struggling,” said Laura Phillips, senior vice president of toys and seasonal merchandising at Wal-Mart. “But we do know that the kids are probably going to get what they want on their wish lists.”

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 9

Fresh & Piney

Pick me!

Adopt a local tree for Christmas — don’t forget the hand saw JENNIFER LEHMAN SPECIAL SECTIONS REPORTER


eading out into the forest with the family in tow and some hot chocolate stored for a break is how the annual tradition of cutting down the Christmas tree from local forests can begin. The nearest Christmas tree cutting area in a protector forest for the Loveland/Fort Collins population is in the Canyon Lake Ranger District of the National Forest Service, south of Red Feather Lakes. The area has been open to the public for decades for Christmas tree cutting, said Mary Bollinger, Visitor Information Specialist at Canyon Lakes Ranger District Office. Each year an average of 2,000-3,000 trees are cut from the area. According to the Canyon Lake Ranger District, this area never runs out of permits. Visitors can take up to five trees and people often buy trees for their grandparents or a neighbor, Bollinger said. Bollinger said for many families it’s a Christmas tradition. People will go with their grandkids, and it's a nice outing for the family and you can get the freshest of pines at $10 a tree. It’s inexpensive and you can’t get any fresher than that, Bollinger said. People that participate in the Christmas tree cutting from state and national

forests are also contributing to the health of the forest, Bollinger said. Removing trees creates thinning which reduces competition among tree species, Bollinger said, creating healthier and more vigorous growing conditions for the rest of the forest. It also helps reduce the possibility of a catastrophic wildfire because it is the relatively smaller trees that are being removed and in a fire these trees can act as fuel ladders. Removing them makes a fire less intense, she said. “In other words, if there are too many trees per acre, the forest eco-system isn't healthy,” she said. Trees are competing for nutrients and space, and thinning allows more sunlight contributing to the diversity of the forest because more sunlight is able to reach the forest ground allowing for other plant species to thrive as well. To get to the Christmas tree area visitors travel across classic forest service dirt roads, Bollinger said, and if covered in snow they will become icy after being driven over a few times. This is why a four-wheel drive vehicle or tires with chains are required to enter the area. Other things to bring: hand saw, (chain saws are not allowed), warm clothes, rope and maybe a tarp to strap the tree down to the car. There are places throughout Colorado where the

public can get permits to cut Christmas trees. If you are looking for an adventure, check out the District 2 Forest Service website for more information about locations outside of Northern Colorado, their permit rules, hours and additional information.

IF YOU GO: What: Christmas Tree cuttin’ When: Area is open 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. daily, Dec. 4-12, but permits can be purchased beginning Nov. 22. Smokey the Bear shows up from 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m. on weekends, for a meet and greet and to take photos with families. Where: The annual Christmas tree area in the Canyon Lakes Ranger District, north of Fort Collins, south of Red Feather Lakes Area. Take Highway 287 north of Fort Collins for 21 miles. At Livermore, turn left onto Red Feather Lakes Road (County Road 74E) and travel approximately 16 miles to the Boy Scout Road. Turn left on the Boys Scout Road and drive seven miles to the entrance of the cutting area. Signs or U.S. Forest Service personnel will provide directions the rest of the way. Chains or four-wheel drive is required to enter the cutting area. Cost: Permits are $10 per tree and can be purchased at the following locations: Canyon Lakes Ranger District office (2150 Centre, Ave., Building E, Fort Collins), Pawnee National Grassland office (660 “O” Street, Greeley, Colo.), Boulder Ranger District office (2140 Yarmouth Avenue, Boulder, Colo.), or at the cutting area on the weekends (cash required). More Information: Contact the visitor information office at 970-295-6700 or visit the web at


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

HDTV Without the Headaches

Not much can top a TV at Christmastime. But finding the right one is tough. Here's how to cut through the techno-babble and find the right set, with the right features, for any budget.



hether you’re finally jumping onto the flat-screen wave or simply seeking the perfect HDTV to give to that special someone, you’ll find today’s televisions have more to offer than room-swallowing screen sizes. But all that techno-jargon can be daunting. Here’s a quick primer on what features to pay attention to, along with a list of room-worthy sets for any budget.

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 11 SIZE It matters — at least when it comes to TV shopping. Screen size determines price and the viewing experience at home. To determine how big the TV should be, a good rule of thumb is to take the distance between the couch and where the TV will be and cut it in half. If you’ll be 80 inches away from the TV, for example, opt for a 40-inch screen.

Feeling Blu? If you weren’t able to score an web-connected TV, you can still get those widgets on a web-enabled Blu-ray player. Plus, some players can access your home network, so they can stream your own photos, videos and music to your TV. And there’s no need to toss your DVD movies: Blu-ray players can play them and even improve their video quality through HDMI up-scaling. Sony’s BDP-S370 is Wi-Fi-ready (adapter sold separately) for accessing Sony’s Web widgets as well as your personal media files from your home network. If you own an iPhone, a free app from Sony will turn it into an extra remote control. Price: $180, for dealers. For road warriors, Samsung’s BD-C8000, right, is loaded with a 10.3-inch screen and a 3-hour battery. You’ll also find built-in wireless and a touch-sensor control. When you’re ready to settle down, the C8000 can playback Blurays on your HDTV via an HDMI output, including 3D Bluray discs when connected to a 3D HDTV (the 3D function only works when the player is connected to a TV). Price: $499, for dealers.

REFRESH RATE One frequently touted specification on an HDTV is its refresh rate, or how many times a still image is displayed on the screen. The faster the refresh rate, the less blur you’re likely to notice during fast motion. You’ll see it measured in hertz (Hz) with 60Hz a common rate for lower-end sets, 120Hz at the mid-range and 240Hz or higher at the upper end. Keep in mind, though, that it’s very difficult to discern the difference between 120Hz and 240Hz. LED Next to refresh rates, the biggest buzzword you’ll encounter is “LED.” But here’s a secret: There’s no such thing as an LED TV. It’s really an LCD TV that uses LED lights — light-emitting diodes — for its backlighting. That said, LED-LCD sets (as they’re often called) do confer some benefits. They’re more energy-efficient than straight-up LCDs, and they can produce a crisper picture with deeper blacks than conventionally backlit LCD displays. LED backlighting is a higher-end feature, so you’ll pay more for it than you would for a traditional LCD display, all else being equal.


You can expect plenty of holiday hype around HDTVs capable of displaying 3D movies like “Avatar.” Unless you’re really willing to splurge, there’s no urgent need to hop on this bandwagon. Why? Because there’s not a ton of 3D content to enjoy just yet, and to view 3D movies you’d need to buy a 3D-capable Blu-ray WIDGETS disc player and (if you use one) an updated A/V receiver. And don’t forget the glasses. One cool feature of many new HDTVs is InWhile most 3DTVs ternet connectivity — either through a wired bundle two pairs of acEthernet connection or through Wi-Fi. TV tive liquid crystal shutmakers have loaded their sets with numerous widgets — shortcuts that will take you instant- ter glasses, outfitting larger families for a 3D ly to select web services like Pandora Internet movie night could be radio or Netflix for movie streaming. If you pricey, as the glasses want to stream movies to your TV through a run about $150 a pair. Wi-Fi connection, you’re better off with an 802.11n router, which features the latest wireI See TV/Page 12 less technology.



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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

Santa-Worthy Sets BUDGET BEATERS You can find plenty of well-equipped sets — with LED backlighting, web connections and high refresh rates — for under $1,000 ... but at the 20to 30-inch range. You can find both LCD and plasma TVs as large as 42-inches, too, but without those extras. If you need something larger, Panasonic’s Viera TC-P42U2 is a 42-inch plasma with a built-in SD card slot for viewing photos and videos. It offers three HDMI connections and Panasonic’s “deep color” technology for sharper color reproduction. Price: $800, for dealers Vizio’s 22-inch M220NV is an LCD set with MID-RANGE MARVELS LED backlighting. You’ll find built-in wireless Between $1,000 and $2,000 you’ll find screen (802.11n) so you can enjoy its onboard Internet sizes ranging from 40- to 50-inches in both applications without stringing cable every which LCD and plasma, plus a nice assortment of way. TVs offering LED backlighting and speedy rePrice: $359, for dealers. fresh rates. You’ll also find a few models with 3D capability. The Sony Bravia 46EX700 is a 46-inch LED-LCD with out-of-the-box Internet connectivity via Ethernet (Wi-Fi is available with optional adapter). It has an ambientlight sensor, which can adjust the display based on room lighting to optimize image quality. There’s also an energy-saving presence sensor, which will turn off the picture when you’re not in the room and can turn off the TV completely if there’s no motion in a room for 30 minutes. Price: $1,249, for dealers Vizio’s XVT472SV is a 47-inch LED backlit LCD with “smart dimming” — which gives the display darker blacks by selectively dimming portions of the backlighting. There are four HDMI connections in the back of the set for connecting component, plus one on the side. You also can enjoy virtual surround sound thanks to its SRS TruSurround HD technology. Price: $1,699, for dealers

HIGH FLYERS At $2,000 and above, you’ll be dealing with the cream of the TV crop. Most 3D HDTVs will be found above this price point, in addition to the most feature-rich sets above 50 inches. LG’s Infinia 47LE8500 is an LED-LCD with local dimming for enhanced blacks and one of the best viewing angles at 178 degrees, meaning you could sit nearly parallel to the screen and still see the picture. It incorporates LG’s NetCast web widgets and is Wi-Fi-ready (adapter sold separately). Price: $2,900, for dealers If you know someone who’s been super good this year (or if it’s you who’s been super good) you can shell out for Samsung’s UN55C9000 — a 55-inch LCD with LED backlighting, 3D playback and Internet capability, all in a package that’s an astounding 0.31 inches thick. It also has jazzy touch-screen remote control. Price: $6,999, Samsung for dealers. UN55C9000

with remote

New Years Eve packages & Restaurant Specials

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For More Information Call • 970-593-6200

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 13


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

Carpet Volleyball: The Kinect for Xbox 360 brings in-motion gameplay right to the living room.

Everybody on your

Feet The Wii stands alone no more. With the introduction of Kinect for Xbox 360 and PlayStation Move, gamers the world over will be taking a more active role in their video game adventures.



ideo-gaming couch potatoes are so yesteryear. In 2010, gamers must get on their feet to conquer feats in seventh-generation gaming systems. Two new consoles debuted this year with actionpacked adventures for all ages to enjoy. Gift-givers, compare specs below to decide which gaming system will help loved-ones make all the right moves.

PLAYSTATION MOVE Perhaps “Move” is short for “move over.”

Brilliant Dining for the Holidays!

The new Sony game controller for PlayStation 3 has carved out a space in the motion-control gaming world just in time for the holiday season. Armed with the motion-sensing controller, gamers will explore high-definition worlds powered by highdef Blu-ray media. The variety of games includes dance, sports, family fun and action. For those games requiring navigation through

Unwrap the Retirement

Christmas Eve - Walk-in or Reserve o Filet Mignon w/Crab Clusters o Lobster Tail w/Drawn Butter o Regular Menu Christmas Day - Closed New Years Eve - Open. Let’s Celebrate! Walk in. New Year’s Day - Walk-in or Reserve

you’ve always dreamed of! At The Hillcrest, what makes us special is what’s inside.

535 N. Douglas Avenue

4366 N N. Lincoln Li l A Ave • LLoveland, l d CO • Bl kt t t Mon - Sat: 11am - 10pm • Sun: 4pm - 10pm

(970) 593-9800


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 15

on-screen characters, gamers may opt to try the new navigation controller’s analog stick in place of the D-pad of the PS3 game controller. Whether gamers are pantomiming a golf swing or kung-fu kick, the PlayStation Eye USB Camera captures their every move. Built-in vibrations surge through the motion-sensing controller and help gamers feel like they’re in another world. Up to four motion controllers can be connected to the system at once, so there’s room for friends and family to join in on the experience. Gamers will need the PlayStation 3 home console and PlayStation Eye USB Camera in addition to the new game controller to get moving in game play. The PlayStation 3 Sports Champion Move Bundle is $399.99, but Move components are available for individual purchase.

NINTENDO WII It was the first motion-sensing console out of the gate back in 2006, and Nintendo’s Wii still covers the broadest demographic in sales. In addition to the Wii Remote and Nunchuk controllers, the system offers the Wii Zapper for crossbow and shooting games, the Wii Wheel for driving games and the Wii Balance Board for fitness games. The experience of classic games like Super Mario Brothers and Tetris becomes complete, interactive immersion. And when gamers tire out from all the movement, they can kick back and watch a movie or TV show streamed from Netflix — subscription required, of course. The Wii Bundle retails for $199.99 and comes with the console and two games: Wii Sports and Wii Sports Resort. KINECT FOR XBOX 360 Gamers and their limbs are the motion controllers in Microsoft’s new Kinect for Xbox 360. The Kinect sensor, which features an RGB camera and depth sensor and microphone, has full-body 3D motion capture, facial recognition and voice capabilities. There’s no need to memorize commands like you do in handheld gaming. “You simply step in front of the sensor and Kinect sees you move, hears your voice and recognizes your face,” says Mike Delman, corporate vice president of Global Marketing for the Interactive Entertainment Business. Clothing or furniture in the room won’t affect game play. Motion-game players can join the Zumba party, go on a Kinect adventure in outer space and even take a joy ride. However, as imagination takes flight, they should be careful not to trip over that ottoman in the living room. The sleek black Kinect sensor plugs into any Xbox 360 and retails for $149.99. The Xbox 360 4GB Console with Kinect is $299.99.

• No Minimum Balance • Free ATM/Debit Card • No Monthly Service Charge • Free Online Banking with Bill Pay • Easy-to-Balance Monthly Statement


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That white Xbox 360 coupled with the new black Kinect sensor may look a bit odd on the media console. Those who would rather keep it monochromatic and stylish can take their gaming consoles back to black with the new Xbox 360 model or opt for the new Wii bundle. The new Xbox is thinner, includes more ports and storage and runs more quietly than the older model, all at the same price. The newer model includes touch-sensitive power and eject buttons and a more angularly designed controller, which more closely matches the new system’s design. Another update is the Kinect-specific connector, which is a more powerful USB port; older Xbox 360s require a separate power supply for the Kinect. The Nintendo Wii now is available in black and comes with the addition of Wii Sports and the MotionPlus enhancement device for the Wii Remote at the same price of the previous bundle.

Loveland Dog Club

Hap Holidapy ys!



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224 E. 29th St. Loveland *Customer purchase checks. Minimum opening deposit is only $50. Bank rules and regulations apply. Ask for details.

*Customer purchase checks. Minimum opening deposit is only $50. Bank rules and regulations apply. Ask for details.

970-669-4245 HB-319367


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 swipe their way through their music, call up a Genius Mix or even tune into FM radio. A fitness button can track steps as a pedometer and also syncs up with the Nike + iPod Sport Kit (sold separately). Only .74 ounces and available in seven colors, it’s also the first nano to feature a clip for easy on-the-go use. Price: 8GB — $149; 16GB — $179

Listen Up

IPOD TOUCH The new iPod Touch is sleeker than ever — only 3.56 ounces and just a smidge more than a quarterinch thick. Featuring a 326ppi highres Retina Display, HD video recordTIMOTHY R. SCHULTE crop, which debuted Sept. 1: pause/play music. A clip easily teth- ing and Face Time video chat over a CTW FEATURES ers the minuscule .44-ounce shuffle Wi-Fi connection, the iPod Touch IPOD SHUFFLE to a bag or shirt, for hassle-free really is an iPhone without the phone. The new Touch offers music The shuffle offers up to 15 hours commuting and working out. eptember is known as “Back Price: 2GB — $49 playback up to 40 hours on a full of audio playback, be it music, auto School” month, but it’s charge (7 hours of video playback), diobooks or a favorite podcasts. rapidly becoming “New iPod IPOD NANO More than 200,000 apps are availShuffle mode will randomly cycle Month,” as Apple has annually — through playlists, while actual clickThe new nano (above) is the first able, too, through Apple’s App and methodically — debuted its to feature a touch-screen interface Store. newest portable media players then able buttons (absent on the previand can playback music up to 24 Price: 8GB — $229; 32GB — since it introduced the iPod nano in ous shuffle model) allow users to navigate tracks, control volume and hours on a full charge. Users can $299; 64 GB — $399 2005. Here’s a look at this year’s


Gifts…Gifts.. & More Gifts Earle’s has flowers and so much more.

• Gifts for every occasion! • New Girlfriend gift section ! • Unique items you won’t find find anywhere else! • Holiday Decorations • Lit Branches • Handblown glass • Department 56 Villages


24th Annual CCBT

Sunday, May 15 6:30 a.m.

62, 37, 30, or 10-mile routes Rides begin and end at McKee Medical Center, 200 Boise Ave., Loveland

$35 Early Registration Begins January 10!

• Easy ordering of E-Gift Cards on website • Free shampoo and style with spa series purchases* • Free mens haircut with every $100 of Gift Card purchases*

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 17

Evo-lution: The first 4G phone, the HTC Evo

Get Smar t with your next

Android Smartphones Android phones are tailor-made for the Google devotee. The operating system, which is developed by the web giant, features an arsenal of built-in Google services, including Google Search, Gmail, Google Maps (with Place and Navigation), YouTube, Google Talk and Google Earth. Android is the leading OS on the market, accounting for onethird of all smartphones sold in the U.S. market, according to NPD Group, a market research company. The Android Market currently features more than 70,000 apps.


phone purchase These days, a truly great smartphone is the one that runs the software and apps best suited to their daily needs. Here's your guide to the best offerings of the holiday season. Story by Timothy R. Schulte • CTW Features


o you remember the last time you used your phone to actually make or take a call? All kidding aside, the truth of the matter is that today we rely on our phones more and more for web browsing, e-mailing, GPS, shooting photos and video, tweeting or doing any number of things that there’s an app for. But not to fear, device manufacturers and software developers are responding to our growing number of mobile needs with devices, operating systems and apps that are faster and more powerful than ever. If you’re giving the gift of communication this year, read on to find the right device for everyone on your list.

Samsung Epic

The first 4G phone, the EVO is a monster, touting a 4.3-inch 480x800-pixel display. There’s a 1.3megapixel front-facing camera for video chat or, for the Facebookprone, self-shot profile pics, and the backside camera captures both 8megapixel photos and 720p high-def video, which you can play right to your TV via the Evo’s HDMI out port. A 1GHz processor provides speedy browsing and e-mailing on either 4G, 3G or Wi-Fi networks. The microSD slot comes standard with 8GB chip, and memory can be expanded to 32GB. The Evo can be turned into a hotspot to support other wireless devices, and it even features a kickstand for viewing high-def media in widescreen mode. Price: $199.99 with two-year contract

SAMSUNG EPIC Like the Evo, the Epic is a 3G/4G phone that doubles as a Wi-Fi hotspot (supporting up to five devices). The 4-inch Super AMOLED screen features a virtual Swype keyboard and also slides out to unveil a full QWERTY keyboard for those who prefer actual buttons to text and e-mail. The 5-megapixel camera/camcorder features autofocus, a Power LED flash and a 3x digital zoom for capturing 720p high-def video at 30fps; a front-facing VGA camera allows for video chat. The 1GHz processor powers apps and browsing, and the Epic comes with a 16GB microSD chip standard, expandable to 32GB. Price: $249.99 with two-year contract


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 T-MOBILE HTC G2 with Google The sequel to the first Android phone, T-Mobile’s G1, the G2 is T-Mobile’s first 4G-capable phone. The G2 runs Android 2.2 on an 800MHz processor, and the 3.7-inch 480x800-pixel Swype-enabled touch screen slides out to a full QWERTY keyboard. The 5megapixel camera features flash and autofocus and also captures 720p HD video. The G2 comes with 4GB of onboard memory and an 8GB microSD card comes standard (with support for up to 32GB). Users also can control their phone — make calls, send messages, browse the web — with the new Google Voice Actions feature. Price: Price TBD.

VERIZON Motorola Droid 2 Just like the original Droid, the Droid 2 is a slider, but beyond that there aren’t a whole lot of similarities. The Droid Deuce offers a battery usage life of 575 minutes, a nearly 50 percent increase over the original. It comes stock with Android 2.2 Froyo and Adobe Flash Player 10.1, and it features 8GB of on-board memory in addition to an 8GB miroSD card (expandable to 32GB). The 5GB camera/camcorder records DVD-quality 720x480 video at 30fps. The Droid 2, which runs on a 1 GHz processor, can support up to five devices as a Wi-Fi hotspot. “Star Wars” fans can show their enthusiasm with a special namesake R2-D2 version, the backside of which is designed after the famous robot. Price: $199.99 with two-year contract.

iOS Apple’s operating system is no stranger, as it powers iPhones, iPod Touches and iPads, and is prominently displayed in the ubiquitous television commercials for each. The latest version of the software, iOS 4, brings multitasking to the iPhone, introduces a new video-calling feature called FaceTime, and, of course, offers direct access to music and movies via iTunes and the more than 250,000 apps available in Apple’s App Store.


MOTOROLA DROID X The Droid X shuns the slider for a candy bar body of more Evo proportions. It features a 4.3-inch 854x480-pixel highres screen to display its 8-megapixel photos or 720p (1280x720) high-def video, which also can be displayed on a high-def display via the HDMI out at up to 30fps playback. As is becoming expected of smartphones, the Droid X can function as a Wi-Fi hotspot for up to five other devices. The Droid X packs a 1Ghz processor, up to 8GB on-board memory and a pre-installed 16GB microSD card, expandable to 32GB. Price: $199.99 with two-year contract.

iPhone 4 Forget the infamous antenna issues for a moment and focus on what makes this the best iPhone yet. The 3.5-inch touch screen features what Apple is labeling Retina Display — 640x960-pixel resolution at 326 ppi. The LED flash camera/video recorder captures 5megapixel stills and 720p video up to 30fps. The iPhone 4, available in 16GB or 32GB models, features a much-improved battery life over previous models and also introduces a three-axis gyroscope along its accelerometer for improved gaming. Price: 16GB — $199 with two-year contract. 32GB — $299 with two-year contract.

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webOS Smartphones Palm’s operating system for its Pre and Pixi devices is all about consolidation. Users can feed multiple e-mail accounts into a single inbox, and Palm Synergy integration brings together multiple sources of information (think Facebook, Google and LinkedIn) into one space for both contacts and calendar events. The announced 2.0 version of webOS will organize multitasking programs into like groups under a feature called Stacks, and Synergy will open to developers to integrate account and contact information and events right into new apps, thousands of which, from Fandango to Facebook, are available in the Palm App Catalog.

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 19

with LED flash. Wi-Fi capability also serves as a hotspot for up to five devices (Verizon only). The Pre Plus features 16GB of memory and comes with built-in GPS. Price: AT&T — $149.99 with two-year contract. Verizon — $49.99 with two-year contract.

BLACKBERRY SMARTPHONES Customizable menus and Home screen, universal search, an all-in-one social network feed and faster web browsing (including tabs) are among the upgrades in the BlackBerry 6, the newest operating system. System-wide multitouch means tasks are only a few simple touches away (versus reliance on the menu button) and a new Wi-Fi media sync feature lets you view your MP3 library, tweak playlists and download songs right over the same wireless network. The new OS will push to the BlackBerry Bold 9700 and 9650, and the BlackBerry Pearl 3G, but it’s standard on the new Torch 9800 handset (and, of course, future BlackBerry devices).

PALM PIXI PLUS This candy bar smartphone features a 2.63-inch touch screen alongside a physical QWERTY keyboard — no sliding required — and comes with 8GB of memory. Like the Pre Plus, the Pixi Plus has W-Fi hotspot capabilities (Verizon only) and built-in GPS, while the LED flash camera captures 2-megapixel stills, plus video. Price: AT&T — $79.99 with two-year contract. Verizon — $29.99 with twoyear contract.

AT&T — BLACKBERRY TORCH 9800 The newest BlackBerry features a 3.2-inch touch screen and is slightly larger than a credit card when closed, but it slides open to reveal a full QWERTY keyboard for tapping out e-mails on the go. The 5-megapixel camera features zoom, autofocus, image stabilization and 11 screen modes, in addition to video recording. The Wi-Fi-ready Torch can sync media files over wireless networks and is capable of tethering other devices. A 4GB media card is included, and it supports microSD cards up to 32GB. Price: $199.99 with two-year contract.

AT&T / VERIZON Palm Pre Plus The touchstone design features a 3.1-inch multitouch screen that slides out to a full QWERTY keyboard. The camera captures video and 3-megapixel stills

Upcoming Holiday Events December 11th


December D ecember 118th 8th

Breakfast with Santa and Gingerbread Decorating: 9-11am - Reservations Suggested. Bring the kids and enjoy breakfast and time with Santa. Afterwards kids get to decorate a gingerbread man for free!


Berthoud High School Bridge Between Show Choir performs “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” Performances at 10:00 & 11:30

in Loveland

We have the largest selection in Northern Colorado


Fruit Pies: Apple, Dutch Apple, Apple-Raspberry, Blueberry, Cherry, Cranberry-Apple, Dutch Cherry, Dutch Peach, Pumpkin, Pecan, Sweet Potato and many more. Cream Pies: Banana, Chocolate, Chocolate Mousse, Coconut, Lemon, Peanut Butter and Lemon Meringue... to name a few.

808 14th St. SW • Loveland • 667-9811

Christmas Gift Baskets Large selection of all sizes and price ranges. Choose from cookie baskets, deli baskets, combination deli/pastry baskets and more!

Open Mon - Sat 6am-6pm • Sun 7am-5pm


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

Music to your


Whether it’s an audiophile who spends his evenings enjoying LPs or the commuter who sneaks in a podcast on her way to work, without the right headphones, it’s all just noise into three basic groups. Ear buds are the most common form of headphone, the ones you’ll get free with your digital music player. They’re lightweight, low-cost and fairly unobtrusive, but t first glance, you wouldn’t think there’s they aren’t always up to the job of providing the much to talk about with headphones. One end into your music player, the other into best sound quality. A variant of the ear bud, the in-ear headphone, often delivers superior sound the ear, right? Well, not quite. If you have frequent travelers, teens or music maniacs on your quality because they’re inserted deeper into the ear canal. These headphones are often coated holiday shopping list, you can amp up their auwith a soft fabric or removable rubber sleeve dio experience with some higher-tech headthat you can swap out as it ages. phones than what they’ll get packaged with An over-the-ear headphone (sometimes retheir iPod. ferred to as an “on-ear” or “ear cup” headYou can break down the headphone universe




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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 21 phone) completely encloses your ears. This presents an obvious benefit: It crowds out surrounding noise. These headphones also are higher-end, delivering richer sounds and a deeper bass than ear buds. They also tend to feature noise-cancellation technology, which uses a combination of physical material and digital technology to dampen any ambient noise around you while preserving the sound of your music. The downside: They’re not as portable as your other options, and they’re pricier.

FOR THE HARDCORE MUSIC LOVER If high fidelity is their desire, they’ll need a pair of over-the-ear headphones that can deliver both pristine sound and a comfortable fit for hours. Listeners can pair these audiophile headphones with a common MP3 player, but they’re better served connected to an A/V receiver. Sennheiser’s HD 595 headphones use the company’s Ergonomic Acoustic Refinement (EAR) design to better direct sound toward your ear. A leatherette headband and velour ear pads give the HD 595 a soft touch during use and its nine foot cable lets you enjoy a thunderous movie night from the couch without waking the kids. Price: $329, for dealers. Not every music lover appreciates Dr. Dre, but they’re sure to like his Studio Beats headphones from Monster Cable. They deliver noise cancellation through the company’s “powered isolation” technology via a pair of AAA batteries. Plus they offer a digital amplifier and a scratch resistant finish. Price: $349, for dealers.

separate component makes the headphones themselves lighter on the head and easier to fold up. An airline adapter also is included. Price: $129, for dealers.

FOR TUNED-UP TEENS The last thing you want to do is give a teenager another opportunity to tune you out, but if you must, you’ve got more to consider than just functionality. Teens desperately need to look good. Sony’s EX ear buds deliver a touch of style, with five color choices and a rounded exterior that looks more like a pearl earring than a headphone. The EX line offers adjustable cords and three ear pads for customizing your fit. Price: $19, for dealers. If you want a higher-end option, Jaybird’s Sportsband headphones provide a secure overthe-ear fit perfect for track stars. Plus, they offer built-in Bluetooth, a choice of nine colors and higher fidelity audio thanks to its digital enhancement technology dubbed apt-X. A built-in mic turns the Sportsband into a hands-free device, not that you’ll give them the car keys anytime soon. Price: $99, for dealers.

Dr. Dre’s Studio Beats headphones from Monster Cable

FOR THE TRAVELER Noise cancellation is a must-have feature in any FOR THE COMMUTER headphone you’re sizing up for a frequent flyer. Trekking back and forth on a train or bus reThis technology greatly reduces the drone of an quires a set of headphones that are highly portable airplane engine but requires power to operate, so and can drown out those around you without exbattery life is an important consideration. ploding your eardrum. Headphones with BlueThe Bose QuietComfort 15 boasts a 35-hour tooth technology can establish a wireless connec- life on a single AAA battery, with microphones intion with a music player (provided it supports side and outside of the headphones to detect Bluetooth) so listeners won’t get tangled up with and reduce ambient noise. It emwire as they travel. ploys new ear cushion material Jaybird’s Freedom (JB200) is a water-resistant that the company says also Bluetooth headphone that features a sturdy head- contributes to blunting noise. band for keeping ear buds in place while you hus- It ships with a two-prong airtle to get out of the rain. There’s also a built-in mi- line adapter, so you won’t be crophone, so it can double as a wireless earpiece stuck with the crummy for your cell phone when not streaming your headphones that many airtunes. It features noise cancellation and has a 4lines make you buy. Price: hour battery life. Price: $129, for $299, for dealdealers. ers. If you’re on a tighter budget, in-ear headphones A lower cost alternative is are a good alternative — they’re lightweight and the Audio-Technica Quiettend to stay put as you walk. The Klipsch Image Point (ATH-ANC1). The headS4 doesn’t have Bluetooth but does provide noise phone promises to block out up to 85 cancellation and flexible oval ear tips (which are percent of outside noise via an external washable and available in three sizes). Price: $99, noise-cancelling module on the connecting cord. Putting noise-cancelling circuitry on a for dealers.

Bose QuietComfort 15


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

The Sporting Life If the special ones on your list like to hit the trails or pound the pavement, they’re going to need earphones that can power them through their workout. That means they’ll need a product that’s sweatproof — or fully waterproof — and durable.

If you won’t be dipping into the pool, the Sennheiser/adidas PMX 680 offers a sweatproof build with Kevlar-reinforce cables that are sturdy enough for the wear and tear of constant, energetic use. The PMX 680’s 1.64-foot cable can be extended with a 2.3 foot cord that also features a volume adjuster so you won’t have to fiddle with your MP3 player mid-stride. Price: $79, for dealers.

The Surge Waterproof headphones from H20 Audio will withstand heavy perspiration from their toughest workouts and are submergable to a depth of 12 feet, so they’re ideal for swimmers or runners who won’t miss a training session. Arm bands and a sportswrap band, which keeps these ear buds sitting securely over your head and can be removed so you can use the buds for non-workout listening, are sold separately. Price: $59.99 to $99.99.



WITH PURCHASE OF 3 OTHER PAIRS S AT REGULAR PRICE Equal or Lesser Value Not Valid With Any Other Offer Expires 12/25/10

The Square - Corner of Horsetooth & College (Behind the Bible Superstore) 970-226-1776

Store Hours: M-F 9-8 Sat 9-6 Sun 12-5


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 23

Giving for Good Local church’s event benefits several organizations

al Alternative Giving Fair the weekend of November 6 and 7. In the past eight years, they have raised he intent of alternative giving is to make $104,000 for various local, national and international purchasing gifts an non-profits. act that helps others beEach year the church yond the recipient. helps make about $12,000Shepherd of the Hills 14,000 for these groups and Lutheran Church in Fort it’s all going back to worthCollins held their 9th Annuwhile causes, said Lois Lawson, Chair of Social Concerns Ministry Team and coordinator of the Alternative Giving Fair at Shepherd of the Hills. Lawson said typically 300-400 people come to the event and this year there were about 12 vendors. It’s an alternative giving fair because when people purchase a gift from one of these vendors, they are JENNIFER LEHMAN SPECIAL SECTIONS REPORTER


RH Photots/Jennifer Lehman

Margaret Stockover of Fort Collins ran the Afghan Women’s Self Sufficiency Project booth selling embroidered scarves at the Shepherd’s Hill Lutheran Church Alternative Giving Fair. Left: Grant Family Farms donated canvas bags of fresh vegetables with all proceeds going to ECLA World Hunger. giving back to the world, Lawson said. Many of the articles are made by people in war-torn countries like Uganda and Afghanistan. Lawson said some people take the opportunity to purchase all of their Christmas gifts at the fair. Attendants could purchase a basket of food in someone’s name through the Larimer County Food Bank or purchase a water buffalo, a camel or a trio of

bunnies and many other animals in the name of a loved one to benefit self-sustaining people in different areas of the world through Heifer International. One of the organizations at the Alternative Giving Fair was the ECLA World Hunger Disaster Relief. “We have people who come regularly,� said Kathy Wendland, volunteer and member of Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church. “Some neighbors of ours

bought all of their gifts here for their extended blended family,� Wendland said. At the World Hunger table were canvas bags of fresh vegetables donated by Grant Family Farms, the proceeds of purchased bags went back to the ECLA World Hunger. The organization Hope Beads Uganda, sells beaded necklaces made by refugee widows in Uganda. These artisans were affected by the I See Giving/Page 24

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 Right: Donna Goins of Fort Collins volunteered at the bake sale table and is a member of Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church. Money made from the homemade baked goods went to homelessness prevention. Below: The colorful beaded necklaces were at the Hope Beads Uganda booth. The necklaces are made of rolled recycled paper by artisans affected by the civil war in Uganda.

Giving From Page 23

two-decade long civil war and create necklaces of beads they make from recycled paper. Margaret Stockover of Fort Collins was at the event selling shawls and scarves hand-embroidered by Afghan women. She has been to Kabul three times where a group of women does the colorful stitching detail in each piece. Twenty-two families are supported and all funds go to paying for the work, materials and shipping costs. There was also a giveat-will bake sale with a variety of goodies from cookies, to brownies to pies. Donna Goins of Fort Collins was volunteering at the bake sale table and is a member of the church. Money made from the homemade baked goods went to homelessness prevention, Lawson said. Another vendor, 10,000 Villages, is nonprofit fair trade shop in downtown Fort Collins with merchandise from all over the world made by artisans who receive fair pay for their work.


The Women’s Bean Project out of Denver had a booth as well, selling gourmet bean soup, chip dip and gift baskets, to help fund their mission of assisting women in ending the cycle of poverty and unemployment. Lutheran Family Services was also amongst the vendors selling Christmas items and trying to get exposure, Lawson said. They are trying to get the word out that they need foster homes and sponsors for refugee families coming to the area. The CSU Women’s Association had a booth selling creative cards. The proceeds go to scholarships for women attending CSU, Lawson said. Other organizations included the local Book Trust office in Fort Collins and Equal Exchange fair trade coffee and chocolate. The fair gives people an alternative to the mall shopping, Lawson said. By buying these gifts you are helping someone have a better life.

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Family Owned & Operated Since 1995 HB-319477

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For old-fashioned family fun, nothing beats a board game. Not to be outdone by the new movers and shakers in home entertainment, motion-sensing video game systems like Nintendo Wii and Kinect for Xbox 360, old school classics have upped their game. New editions use text messaging, electronic components instead of cards, and rules that reward speed and efficiency. Here's a look at the new generation.

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 25

MONOPOLY: REVOLUTION EDITION (Hasbro, $34.99) Celebrating 75 years of miniature capitalism, Monopoly still rules. This contemporary version features a round game board, updated “here and now” pricing and a unit that plays sound effects and acts as an electronic banker.

Story by Danielle Cadet • CTW Features

CLUE: SECRETS & SPIES (Parker Brothers, $24.99) The timeless game of murder and mayhem now includes a new optional text-messaging feature. Use an ultraviolet secret decoder to assist agents Plum, Scarlet, Mustard and others on their international crime-solving adventure. I See SPIN/Page 26


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It pays to be a World Beverage Preferred Customer! Our guests earn THOUSANDS of dollars in rebates every month! HB-318820


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 SCRABBLE SLAM (Hasbro, $29.99) Arranging wood letter chips to make words is so ... last century. The latest version of Scrabble puts a premium on speedy, serious word building. Players must think and act fast. Get locked in a high-speed race to build a chain of words in 75 seconds.

TRIVIAL PURSUIT: BET YOU KNOW IT EDITION (Hasbro, $29.99) In this version, participants field questions in a variety of styles with 1,800 fresh questions that include images and multiple-choice options. Players don’t have to know all the answers to win; they also can bet chips on whether opponents know the answer. A good guess can mean one step closer to victory.


THE GAME OF LIFE: 50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION (Hasbro, $17.99) Entertaining families for 50 years, Life continues to present the milestones and mundane everyday tasks we experience in a lifetime. This commemorative edition includes golden accents and Life coins that spark conversation. Spin the golden wheel and experience the ups and downs of Life.

OPERATION SILLY SKILL GAME (Milton Bradley, $16.99) Although it still requires a top doc to save the day, Operation boasts a revamped board that makes crazy new sounds like chimes, burps and barks. Press Cavity Sam’s nose to find out if a procedure was a success, and then listen up as the game dictates the next direction.

U-BUILD BATTLESHIP (Hasbro, $19.99) Customization is key in this revolutionary new line of brick-based games. Participants build fleets of battleships, aircraft carriers, destroyers and submarines and must work to keep their ship safe and blow their opponent’s ships out of the water.

SORRY! SPIN (Hasbro, $24.99) Game night will never be the same as participants seek sweet revenge with a turn of the Sorry! Wheel on a new rotating board. Getting “home” is more unpredictable than ever, making it anybody’s game to the bitter end. HB-319597

Change your life

The sweet classic looks much the same as it did back in the day, and continues to introduce little ones to board games via the magical world of tasty treats. Colored cards and fanciful illustrations direct players to the Cupcake Commons and the Chocolate Mountains as they journey to the castle. A simple move of the pawn is enough to make imaginations run wild.

Largest Selection of Poinsettias in Loveland • Fresh Cut Trees • Garlands & Boughs • Christmas Cactus • Live & Cut Trees HB-319487

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Scientific data and user feedback have demonstrated this band may yield benefits in strength, balance, flexibility and endurance. Try it for yourself and feel the power.

at the speed of light.

A hilarious new take on the classic “telephone” game, this edition of Cranium requires players to create scribbles and sketches and pass them on. The whole family is sure to enjoy the final product when the last player reads the accumulated story out loud.


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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 27

Home, Sweet


High-tech upgrades know no bounds — even when it comes to an everyday object like the alarm clock SONY DASH PERSONAL INTERNET VIEWER How's this for an alarm clock? In addition to waking them up from a nap, the Dash keeps them up-to-date with e-mail and social networking sites with apps for Gmail, Facebook and Twitter, in addition to streaming content from Netflix, YouTube and Pandora. Or, they can simply hit the snooze button on the 800x480 LCD touch screen. Price: $199.99, for dealers.

Cool Cameras SONY CYBER-SHOT TX9 Sony's newest Cyber-shot is great at capturing 12.2-megapixel stills alongside 1080i high-def video. But the coolest feature is the Intelligent Sweep Panorama Mode. Simply press shutter and sweep and the camera continuously shoots and stitches together images for stunning horizontal and vertical shots. In video mode, the Panorama feature records separate right- and left-eye shots for dramatic presentation on a 3DTV. Price: $399.99, for dealers.

CASIO EXILIM EX-H20G If they've ever wondered just where in the world that photo came from, Casio's new Exilim will tell them. The 14.1-megapixel cam features Casio's Hybrid GPS technology will geotag photos and videos, both in- and outdoors, in addition to showing the user's current location, which is displayed right on the camera's 3-inch high-res LCD. Price: $349.99, for dealers.

Pamper your feet at one of our foot care clinics

Enjoy services such as warm water soak, soothing lotion foot massage and nail grooming. A nurse will be available for questions and recommendations. To make an appointment at one of our foot clinics,, call (970) 624-5468

All faiths or beliefs are welcome. 08-G2017


SONOS ZONEPLAYER S5 If they want to stream music from your iTunes library to any room in the house, well, there's an app for that. The Sonos Controller app turns any iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch into a remote that plays music directly from a computer or hard drive to any room with a Sonos ZonePlayer S5 all-in-one wireless music system. Control volume, change tracks and - if you have more than one S5 in the house - even sync up songs, all from your Apple iOS device. Music services, Napster, Pandora, Rhapsody and SIRIUS all instantly stream, too. Price: $399.99, for dealers.



Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010



4175 Byrd Drive, Loveland Motorplex at Centerra I-25 at Crossroads Blvd

970-667-8905 • 866-530-3825 HB-318836

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 29


3D Gameplay

A resurrected franchise and two remakes are among the hotly anticipated 3DS titles.

KID ICARUS: UPRISING Hero Pit and his partner Palutena, the goddess of light, battle against Medusa’s army in the first ’Icarus’ title since 1991’s “Of Myths and Monsters� for the Gameboy.

TANIESHA ROBINSON CTW FEATURES Nintendo's new 3DS handheld incorporates the latest in visual technology without the fussy frames Finally, we can ditch annoying glasses and enjoy 3D entertainment with dignity. Well, at least Nintendo 3DS gamers can.

The new 3DS is the first portable 3D gaming system to hit the market - though an intended holiday-season release has been pushed back to early 2011. Still, gamers will be able to enjoy all the 3D fun with their naked eyes. Three-dimensional objects protrude from the 3.5-inch, 800x240pixel screen, and players can control games via a 3-inch touch screen, c

the D-pad and an analog "slide pad" that allows 360-degree motion. The device also contains motion and gyro sensors. Other features include an embedded mic, wireless communication to connect with other players, and a depth slider to adjust the level of 3D effect. Gamers can even shut off 3D completely, but where's the fun in that?


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STAR FOX 64 3D Experience the full distance and depth of outer space as you guide Fox McCloud and team on intergalactic missions in this 3D remake of the classic Nintendo 64 title. THE LEGEND OF ZELDA: THE OCARINA OF TIME 3D One of the greatest games of all time, the remake of this N64 best-seller will allow players to finally experience hero Link — both as an adult and a child — in 3D, as he fights to save Princess Zelda.

Looking for that perfect Christmas gift for your children? For what a daily “kid’s meal� would cost, you could have a great start on a college fund. See Paul Hummel, ChFC, for ways to start saving for that big event.


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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010


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CHRISTMAS BAKE SALE AND BAZAAR All Saints’ Episcopal Church is holding its annual Christmas Bake Sale and Bazaar, featuring new and old jewelry, Christmas decorations, knit wear, handcrafted chairs, used books and tools, silent auction items, jams and jellies, fruit cakes, seasoned oils, cookies and desserts. A lunch of turkey and trimmings will be served by the women of the church for $8. Everyone is invited to attend. When: 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Dec. 4 Where: 3448 N. Taft, Loveland Cost: Turkey and trimmings lunch, $8 Contact: Mary E. Fay at 970-667-8499.



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HOLIDAY ARTS AND CRAFT FAIR AT PVH The public is invited to a holiday arts and craft fair at Poudre Valley Hospital and Medical Center of the Rockies. The fair will feature

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handmade items for sale by local artists and crafters. Items include scarves, cards, jewelry, soaps, baked goods, salsa, woodcraft, photographs, wreaths, and more. When: 7 a.m.-5 p.m., Nov. 19 and Dec. 1 Where: Nov. 19 at Poudre Valley Hospital; Dec. 1 at Medical Center of the Rockies Contact: For more information, call 970-495-7400. 7TH ANNUAL HOLIDAY BOUTIQUE Local artists will have unique works of art on display for sale that would make the perfect holiday gift for that special someone. Pottery, jewelry, holiday decorations, candles, unique fashions, gourmet recipe mixes and rustic furniture. When: 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Dec. 4 Where: Historic Barn at Prairie Moon Alpacas, 9317 Buckhorn Rd, Masonville Contact: For more information, call 970-613-1977

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 31

SCHMIDT’S EVENTS Schmidt’s Bakery & Delicatessen will be hosting the following holiday events: Events & Times: • Nov. 25, 8 a.m.-2 p.m., Thanksgiving day Brunch • Dec. 3, 4-8 p.m., Olde Tyme Wisconsin Fish Fry • Dec. 11, 9-11 a.m., Breakfast with Santa and Gingerbread Decorating • Dec. 18, 10 and 11:30 a.m. performances, Berthoud High School Bridge Between Show Choir performs “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” Where: All events are at Schmidt’s, located at 808 14th St. SW, Loveland. Contact: 970-6679811. HOME SWEET HOME HOLIDAY EXTRAVAGANZA Join Habitat for Humanity on a day of Holiday Cheer, complete with Gingerbread, Santa, a Holiday Bazaar and much more. Help build homes year-

round for Loveland Families by supporting Loveland Habitat for Humanity. When: 10:30 a.m.4 p.m., Dec. 4. Where: Embassy Suites Loveland Cost: $10 — Gingerbread Decorating, $15 — Photo with Santa Claus or Santa Paws, 10:30-4, Pets: 1-4 only. $20 — Photo and Gingerbread Decorating Contact: Call Loveland Habitat for Humanity, 970-6699769

the library Capitol Campaign), a book sale, wood carvers JOHNSTOWN SEand a mitten tree for NIOR CENTER donations to the CHRISTMAS BOUHNS. TIQUE When: 9 a.m.Crafts and baked 5 p.m., Dec. 4 goodies, raffle, a Contact: A schedwagon full of toys for ule for event times boys and girls. can be found at When: 9 a.m.-3 www.friendsofthe p.m.; Santa Visit lovelandlibrar from 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Dec 4., "CHRISTMAS TIDINGS" Lunch available 11 CHRISTMAS CONCERT BY THE LOVEa.m.-1:30 p.m. Where: Johnstown LAND CHORAL SOCommunity Center, CIETY AND HOLIDAY 101 W. Charlotte St. ORCHESTRA When: 7:30 P.M. Cost: Tickets Dec. 10; 2 p.m. and $1 each, 6 for $5 Contact: 970-587- 7:30 p.m. Dec. 11; 2 BREAKFAST WITH 5251 for more infor- p.m. Dec. 12. SANTA Where: Rialto Themation, sponsored All you can eat ater, Loveland by Rotary Club pancakes, Rudolph Cost: Reserved pancakes for the THE FRIENDS OF THE seats for all perforkids, sausage, coffee, LIBRARY HOST 6TH mances are $16. milk and juice and ANNUAL LOVELAND Contact: Tickets pictures with Santa. LIGHTS may be purchased at Sponsored by the the Rialto Theater A celebration of Loveland High winter holiday tradi- Box Office during School Band. regular business tions will feature When: 7:30–10:30 children's gingerhours or at a.m., Dec. 4 www.lovelandchoralbread house workWhere: Loveland society. shops, find the ginHigh School Cafete- gerbread men conorg. ria, 920 W. 29th St. test, holiday party "THE WILL ROGERS Cost: Adults $6 food demos, FUMC FOLLIES" Children (12 and bell choir perforunder) $4 mance, decorated When: Thursday, FriContact: Call 970- trees, holiday disday and Saturday plays, a bake sale 402-4299 for more evenings and Sunday (proceeds to benefit afternoons through information or visit

Quality Items at Great Prices Musical Instruments • Jewelry • Coins • TV’s • Video Games • Blu-ray & DVD Movies • CD’s • Guns & Ammo • Tools & so much more Come Shop In Our Clean, Bright & Friendly Atmospshere Loveland’s Premier Pawn Shop 200 N. Lincoln • (970) 663-1389


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Jan. 16. Additional performances on Wednesday evenings and Saturday afternoons during the month of December. Where: Candlelight Dinner Theater Cost: Dinner and show prices start at $45.50 for adults, $29.50 for students 18 and under. "Show Only" tickets are $29.50 for adults, $19.50 for students. Contact: Call the box office at 970744-3747 for reservations or book online anytime at

the day for these residents. When: Looking for volunteers now through Dec. 6. Contact: Diane or Ken Johnson 970613-1411.

WILDFIRE HOLIDAY ARTS SALE AND SHOW Think globally and buy locally at the Wildfire Holiday Arts Sale and Show during the first weekend in December, where local artists will offer original pieces of work, painting, jewelry, fiber art, metal work, sculpture, pottery as well as hand crafted preserves, 15TH ANNUAL SEand locally produced CRET SANTAS FOR honey and beeswax THE ELDERLY candles. The Secret Santas When: Reception are looking for volheld 6-9 p.m., Dec. 3 unteers You will be with complimentary paired with an snacks and beveradopted resident livages. Sale continues ing in a nursing or 10 a.m.-6 p.m, Dec. assisted living home 4 and noon to 5 in Larimer County. p.m., Dec. 5. Volunteers can pick Where: 425 Masideas from a list prosachusetts Ave., vided if they’d like to Berthoud take a gift along. Contact: For more Simple items of evinformation go to eryday necessities, a w w w. Wi l d f i r e package to open and many times a visitor I See Holiday/Page 32 can help brighten

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

cludes skates, $4 children 12 and under, $6 adults. Lessons, group From Page 31 discounts, season passes and fundraising 248 Welch Ave. (Back- also available. 2ND ANNUAL HOME Contact: Call 970BASED BUSINESS EXPO side of Fire Depart& CHILI SUPPER 667-5283 ment) This event is a Contact: Jenny HORSE-DRAWN fundraiser for Foote at 970-532CARRIAGE RIDES Berthoud Golden 0247 Step back in time as Links. The Promenade Shops THE ICE RINK AT THE There will be a variat Centerra treats ety of gifts for sale in- PROMENADE SHOPS your family to an oldcluding baked goods, AT CENTERRA fashioned horse-drawn Come outside and items from Berthoud carriage ride. enjoy Northern ColSchool Boosters, Arorado's finest outdoor When: 1-4 p.m. bonne, Pampered ice skating rink at The Sundays, Nov. 28, Dec. Chef, as well as em5, 12 & 19 broidery, jewelry, can- Promenade Shops at dles, crafts and more. Centerra. Where: Departing When: Open Daily from the Main Plaza at When: Expo & Gift through February 27, The Promenade Shops Shoppe is 11 a.m.-4 2011 at Centerra p.m., Chili Supper is Cost: No charge. Where: Promenade 3-7 p.m., Dec. 4 Shops at Centerra Contact: Call 970Where: Berthoud Cost: Admission in- 461-1285 for more inCommunity Center,


formation. BREAKFAST WITH SANTA When: 8:30 a.m.-10 a.m. Saturdays, December 4, 11 & 18 Where: The Promenade Shops at Centerra Cost: Tickets are available for $8 per person and will be sold on a first come basis from the Management Office during office hours. Admission includes a delicious breakfast buffet, goody bags for the children and a free photo with Santa. Contact: Call 970461-1285 for more information, www.the promenadeshopsat

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 33

& Family Families pass down a love of good eatin’ to everyone in the family. PORTER “I like including pictures,” Croft said. It brings in the children ancy Croft of and encourages them Loveland is to start cooking too, charting a hisCroft said. tory through family The collection inrecipes. cludes favorite ChristShe is compiling decades of her family’s mas cookie recipes with pictures of her favorite recipes along grandchildren helping with photos so her to bake. children and grandAll of Croft’s chilchildren will have acdren, three daughters cess to the foods of and a son, all enjoy their childhood. Also, maybe they’ll stop call- cooking, she said. ing her for the recipes Croft loves to cook if she just gives them a and change recipes. “I copy, she joked. like to create someNancy Croft and her thing that’s mine,” she husband Howard of five said. years, are both widows One recipe that will and met in hospice. be included is “DanTheir blended family ny’s Favorite Key Lime has given many recipe Pie” a recipe drawn ideas to Croft for her from a family trip to collection. Florida where a variety of key lime pies were Family is important tasted and tips on the to all of her and her ingredients recorded. husband’s children, Back at home, Croft Croft said, and holidays are the time that created their ideal verpeople bring out their sion, now a favorite recipe of her son. favorite recipes to share. Another recipe from “I’m just putting to- Danny’s childhood is “Danny’s Favorite gether kind of a picture cookbook unique Birthday Meatballs” to our blended family,” that began as ground beef and has since deCroft said. Croft sent out a call veloped into ground for recipes and photos turkey, as Danny’s JENNIFER LEHMAN SPECIAL SECTIONS RE-


birthday meal of choice growing up. Julie Browne of Loveland grew up with a supreme chef. “Everything my mother touched was heaven,” Browne said. “She had a real flair for flavor.” Browne’s mother would eat a dish at a restaurant and replicate it perfectly at home, Browne said, like duck with orange sauce that became the traditional main Christmas dish at her family’s table growing up. Other favorite dishes of her mothers are wild rice and a salad full of fresh ingredients, and lots of fresh veggies topped off with homemade buttermilk ranch dressing. Browne absorbed this love of cooking and choice ingredients and now has a collection of some 200 cookbooks that she reads in bed like novels, she said. “I like everything about (cooking),” Browne said, including shopping for food, touching it and smelling it. Browne said her

mother used base recipes and then changed them to what she wanted or adjusted them to the available foods in her RH Photos/Jennifer Lehman fridge or garNancy Croft holds open the page in her family cookden. book to Julie’s Mother’s Chicken, a recipe from “My mom Croft’s best friend’s mother. The photo in the book was good at using what she was taken in 2007 when the friend’s mother turned had,” Browne 100. said. for it. food in Brown’s family Now, Browne cooks comes from the British Two of Browne’s the same way using roots of her husband, aunts have also influseasonal vegetables Duncan. enced her love for and herbs from her Browne is in the jewfamily’s garden, tweak- cooking, helping her ing recipes and adding put together a feast for elry business with her her annual Christmas family at Sather’s variety like multiple party and regular famiLeading Jewelers in colors of carrots to a Fort Collins and is esvegetable dish. Browne ly gatherings where the Mexican food of pecially busy during said her family grows B ro w n e ’s Hispanic herthe holidays so that is most of what they eat itage comes out in full when her husband’s in the summers. f o rc e . British food traditions A new challenge for Growing up her fam- take over, she said. Browne in recent The British tradimonths is cooking for ily made Mexican cookies, a tradition tionally begin celebrather son’s wheat allergy. that carries on today ing and decorating the “I’ve just kind of had during the holidays tree on Christmas Eve fun with it,” she said. and year round. and the celebrate for Browne has worked “It’s celebration, it’s the week following, to mix different wheatlaughing, that’s part of Duncan said. He takes free flours to get the the week off of work the experience,” results she’s looking following Christmas to Browne said of family for and uses alternative spend time with his gatherings. sweeteners like agave kids and to make some “It’s just a fun culnectar in baked goods. of the foods he grew up ture to be a part of,” Browne said it’s a with around the holiBrowne said. fun challenge, and that I See Family/Page 34 her family is healthier Another culture of


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

Family From Page 33

days, he said. Growing up in England, Duncan’s favorite traditions were Christmas pudding and Christmas cake. “Christmas pudding is a very rich, suet-based pudding with a lot of dried fruits and nuts,” Duncan said. Usually alcohol is used in the recipe, often brandy or rum and sometimes even beer. Christmas pudding is made a month in advance. One tradition associated with Christmas pudding is that each person in the family gives the pudding a stir and makes a wish, Duncan said. Duncan said he does not make Christmas pudding here because it is hard to find the ingredients, so in recent years they have been buying them, “which is of course a very poor alternative,” he said, “I would like to get back into making them.” Traditions that Duncan remembers as a child and enjoys making

with his family today include mince pies and sausage rolls. Mince meat pies are small pies with mincemeat inside surrounded by pastry, and sausage rolls are rolled pastries filled with sausage meat and sometimes chopped onions and herbs. Duncan has made this for his daughter’s school classes before. For the American side of the family Duncan will make a traditional English breakfast with bacon sausage, eggs, fried bread and fried tomatoes. Duncan said his children like cooking with him and learning about the different traditions. He would like to take the children to England for Christmas some year soon to get the full experience with his mother and siblings, with Christmas pudding, Christmas cake and all the other English traditions. “We all love the traditions he’s brought to this family,” Julie said.

Julie Browne at her home with the dishes she made for the Reporter-Herald’s Holiday Cookbook: Roasted Sausages and Lentils, Pumpkin Power Muffins (wheat and sugar free) and Festive Cran-Orange Cake.


he providers and staff of the

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up the Holidays The love affair with all things vampire presents several gift ideas



ampires proved they really are undead this year. The romance between a stubborn teenage girl and a noble vampire in the bestselling “Twilight� novels inspired movies, music, clothing and toys that continue to fly off shelves. “Eclipse,� third in the Twilight Saga series, opened in June with the widest release in cinematic history and grossed $68 million opening day, second highest ever. Top opening-day gross, coincidentally, went to the second flick in the vampire franchise, “New Moon.� The mythological beings have infiltrated TV, too, landing lead roles on HBO’s “True Blood,� the CW’s “Vampire Diaries� and ABC’s “The Gates.� The vampire

siege is poised to continue until at least 2012, when the last Twilight film hits the big screen. For any youngster enthralled by dark heroes, nothing but vampires will do. Shoppers won’t have to look far to find dozens of items the kids can sink their teeth into. Just remember: shop early. And be home before sunrise.

tel ($24.95, department stores). Vampires, werewolves and girls, oh my. Fans can relive this year’s blockbuster movie at home with the “Eclipse� DVD (release date Dec. 6, 2010, Summit Entertainment). A little night reading: “Breaking Dawn,� fourth novel in the blockbuster “Twilight� series by Stephanie Meyer, will drive two new movies set for release in 2011 and 2012 ($15.63; or get The Twilight Saga Complete Collection, Little Brown & Co., $97).

TRUE BLOOD Millions were inveigled by the love affairs of vampires with a THE TWILIGHT SERIES southern twang Modest mode: The blue in the TV sejacket that the unassumries. Relive the ing heroine Bella Swan drama on disc rocked in the movie with “True “Twilight� inspired Blood: The modern schoolgirls Complete Seceverywhere. The fall ond Season� 2010 Jack collection ($59.99 DVD/$79.98 Blu-ray). includes flannel Explore more adventures with the shirts, jackets and telepathic waitress and her vampire denim leggings ($30 friends in the True Blood Comic to $84, BB Dakota; Book Series from HBO and IDW Pubspecialty and departlishing ($3.99 for comic books; also ment stores). in e-reader formats). Picking teams: Fans can Notes in the night: Drift off to settle the score on whether sleep with vampire lullabies from the vampire Edward or weresecond and third seasons with True wolf Jacob really deserves Blood: Music From the HBO Original Bella’s affection with Twi- Series Volume II ($9.99, Elektra light Saga Dolls from Mat- Records).

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Ecowise gifts hit the road Now you see it... now you see just half: the Dahon Ios XL folding bicycle

Good & Green

To Go

ANNA SACHSE CTW FEATURES Conserving resources, eating organic, using non-toxic cleaning products and recycling everything humanly possible — it’s 2010 and it seems like every household has gone green. The next step? Taking the eco-friendly lifestyle on the road — literally. From stylish bags, outerwear and outdoor dining accoutrements, to sun care, portable toys and transportation devices, this holiday season there’s something truly useful to please all the busy environmentalists on your list. Get ready to take green into the next decade.

wide range of built-to-order models (from $898 at bike shops) If your gift-ee isn’t a serious gear head, Kent, Schwinn, Polaris and F-160 make simpler folding bicycles with smaller wheels and fewer speeds (from $150 at major retailers). always dine alfresco with a picnic And what if basket made from your list also inPEOPLE MOVERS sustainable matericludes a little als like bamboo or squirt who yearns rattan wicker. Opt Help your favorite guy, gal or for their own twofor a classic hand-wotechie teen go green and get fit with wheeler? Made ven willow Picnic a folding bicycle. Perfect for comfrom sustainable Plus eco picnic basmuters, these ultra-flexible peddlers birch wood and nonket for two and you’ll have all the economical, ecological toxic varnish, the also get recycled glass and health benefits of a standard award-winning pedalwine glasses, natural bike and they’re easier to store or free Skuut ($90 at cotton napkins, and transport via car, train or plane. New sporting goods and bamboo plates, flatthis summer, the full-size Dahon Ios toy stores) is perfect ware, cutting board and XL ($1,499 at bike shops) has 24for tykes between two cheese knife, all packed inch wheels, an eight-speed Shimano and five years old. Ridin a chemical-free cotAlfine hub, hydraulic disc brakes and ers kick off the ground ton insulated lining puncture-resistant tires. The Ios as if running, thus glid($109.99 at sporting weighs about 33 pounds and takes ing or “skuuting” themgoods stores). just 15 seconds to fold down to less selves forward and learnthan half its original dimension. A If you’re more inclined ing balance and coordidynamo in the front hub uses pedal- nation. There’s a new toward eco-chic, it’s generated energy to juice up a batmetal version available, tough to beat the tery that powers an LED headlamp with adjustable handleall-new cardboard and can even charge a phone, iPod or bars, hand brake and a (yes, cardboard!) Eating green: reusable GPS. bell. Boxsal Picnic Boxbamboo place setting es. The three Bike Friday, based in bicycle-obfrom To-Go Ware OUTSIDE EATERS graphic styles were sessed Eugene, Ore., also produces packed in a recycled inspired by a boom Your loved ones can high-end folding bikes, including a

plastic holder

box, a briefcase and color-by-numbers paintings ($35 at specialty stores and Each reusable and recyclable box comes with a compostable trash bag and four sets of compostable cornstarch cups, trays, bowls and utensils. Even with a cardboard handle it can carry more than 20 pounds. Consider pairing a picnic box gift with a luscious bottle of Amity Vineyards’ 2007 EcoWine Willamette Valley Pinot Noir. No synthetic sulfites are added during processing, making it one of the few truly organic wines to be produced in the U.S. ($20 at wine shops). To-Go Ware RePEat bamboo utensils will reduce your fork print. The reusable place setting (bamboo fork, knife, spoon and chopstick), rolled in a handy utensil holder made from plastic bags ($11.95, upscale gourmet stores and groceries, outdoor retailers), would make a perfect stocking stuffer. I See GREEN/Page 38

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

GREEN From Page 37

HI-TECH TOTES You’d be hard-pressed to find someone on your list who couldn’t use one of the latest green bags. Active women will love the Sherpani carryall collections, which feature clean silhouettes and fresh feminine designs, and are made with 67-percent recycled nylon, aluminum hardware and non-toxic dyes. Depending on her needs, consider the new Tupelo cycling backpack with hydration ($55.95), the unisex Rumba child backpack carrier ($229.95), or the Meridian expandable upright wheeled carryon luggage, which is small enough to use as a carry-on when zippered, but expands to offer more room for long car trips ($199.95, see for a list of retailers nationwide). Modern men might like the decidedly unlunch-box-looking

GreenSmart Sifaka dual-compartment insulated lunch bag made of Neogreene, an eco-friendly and non-toxic water-based alternative to neoprene ($29.95 at mass merchants). Or maybe he’d prefer REI’s new Quantum laptop messenger bag ($74.50), part of the outdoor chain’s ecoSensitive line (see for locations). Made from recycled PET, each durable, multipurpose satchel liberates 34 16-ounce plastic bottles from the trash. And, of course, it has a plethora of pockets for transporting all his adventure-friendly gizmos — perhaps an Eton Solarlink FR600 American Red Cross Digital AM/FM/shortwave/NOAA and S.A.M.E. Weather Radio ($80, outdoor stores) with flashlight, siren, alarm clock, cell phone charger and four different power sources, including

Rumba child backpack carrier

hand crank and solar power!

ALFRESCO BEAUTY & STYLE Burt’s Bees is known for its all-natural, paraben-, sulfate- and phthalate-free lotions, cleansers and lip balms, but did you know that they also make an herbal insect repellent? Rosemary, lemongrass and citronella oils ensure bugs buzz off, and are safe for children and pets ($8 at drugstores). For campers, package this sweetsmelling pest-rejecter with the Badger no-mess SPF 30 zinc oxide sunscreen face stick. One of the top-rated products in the Environmental Working Group’s 2010 Sunscreen Guide, it provides chemical-free protection and fits nicely in a beach bag or carry-on ($8.50 at natural foods stores). As for the latest cozy cover-ups, REI’s ecoSensitive Badger chemical-free line has somesunscreen thing for every-

Peloton Cycles is committed to providing the best buying experience for our customers by selling top-ofthe-line products such as Specialized, Giro, Mavic, Pearl Izumi, Thule, Blackburn, Camelbak, and Ritchey; just to name a few, along with our commitment for top level service and personal attention. We invite you to come in to our Loveland or Fort Collins stores to browse around our complete selection of Specialized bicycles. We love sharing our experience and passion for anything bikes. We all ride and race and there’s nothing we’d rather do than to match your wants to the product you need. If you need something for your bike, we’ll be sure to find it for you. It doesn’t matter if you are a veteran rider or a newbie, ride the bike path or race downhill – we can answer your questions, because we are passionate about biking and bikes. Every Specialized bike sold from Peloton Cycles comes with free lifetime tune-ups. What this means for you is that you’ll receive high quality, hands-on service and a test ride before you pick up your bike. Why do we do this? We want you coming back time and time again.



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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 39 one. The sweet recycled PET polyester down jacket for toddler girls comes in eggplant purple and punch pink ($49.50). The newest incarnation of the men’s Muir Woods fleece jacket is made with 50 percent recycled Polartec Thermal Pro fabric ($79.50). ’Tis the season for giving. With every pair of TOMS canvas shoes you purchase, the company gives a pair to a child in need. A fashionable woman would jump at the chance to receive a pair of shoes from TOMS new fall collection, especially the hip pink plaid Murray organic cotton vegan classics with faded toe or the sexy gray canvas wedges ($54, $69; see for retailers).

MOBILE DISTRACTION Long car and plane trips are far more fun if the kids are entertained. Why not let them read up about ecofriendly practices? Released in April to coincide with Earth Month, “The Greenzys” (Zeus Media Publishing, 2010) introduces a gaggle of animals that learn the importance of being

REI Quantum laptop messenger bag made from recycled PET

REI recycled PET down jacket in eggplant

green when they help save Orinda, the world’s oldest tree ($17.99). The Greenzys characters — such as Willow the Elephant, who collects rainwater for her plants and uses her trunk as the hose — are also available as cuddly plush toys ($29.99) made from soy fibers and non-toxic dyes in socially responsible factories. Bonus: Each critter comes with a personalized certificate acknowledging that the Arbor Day Foundation has planted a tree in the new owner’s honor (FAO Schwarz). You can also feel good about gifting your favorite cubs with the Green Toys product line, all made in the U.S. The company’s award-winning recycling truck, dump truck and sand play set and the new fire truck ($20 — $25, available at toy stores) are BPA-, PVC- and phthalate-free. The toys are made from recycled plastic milk containers and are durable enough for any park or beach adventure.

Let's roll: Skuut bicycle for young ones


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Nostalgia plays big in today’s toys


fat stress calorie guilt


hen buying gifts for children this holiday season, think back to your childhood and what you loved and consider buying new versions of those toys. This year, nostalgic toys — oldies but goodies — are very

popular. “Companies are feeding on our growing need to connect with the product,” said Mari Richards, toy designer and head of “They are tapping old brands that parents remember from their own childhoods, or highlighting the handmade, homegrown aspects of a new product.” The toys and gifts we feature in this guide are


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our favorite new ones. “Picking toys that serve double-duty in that they entertain and teach is a surefire way to get more bang for your buck when gift-giving,” said toy expert Wendy Young, founder of Michiganbased Kidlutions Preferred Product Awards. We have many of those below. Still not sure? Another big trend that continues: anything eco-friendly is hot.

With Warm Wishes

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SALLY FARHAT KASSAB CTW FEATURES Located at: Home State Bank 300 East 29th St. Loveland, CO 80538 Investme Investment ment ntt CCenters enters ente t rs of of Am AAmerica, erici a Inc IInc. nc (ICA) ((ICA), (ICA ICA) m member ember embe b r FINRA FIFINRA/SIPC, NRA/SIPC iis not affiliated Home State Bank. Securities and insurance products offered through ICA and affiliated insurance agencies are *not insured by the FDIC or any other Federal Government agency *not a deposit or other obligation of, or guaranteed by any bank or its affiliates *subject to risks including the possible loss of principal amount invested.

NEWBORN TO 4 YEARS OLD For those shopping for pregnant friends or baby gifts, California Baby unveiled a Holiday Cheer Tote Set complete with sensitive-skin bubble bath, spritzer (great for destressing over the holidays), a scrub puff and reusable tote ($30, major retailers). Every child loves bubbles, and there’s little that’s more fun than blowing them in the bathtub. Munchkin Bubble Monkeys let you do just that. Two bubble monkey wands are fun to hold and include a dip tray that suctions to the wall (we love this part) and bubble solution ($9, major retailers). For endless entertainment without mom, the Chicco Bilingual Talking Farm is a plastic, interactive “farm” with learning games such as naming, and it teaches numbers, colors, animals and sounds. This toy invites children to sing along with nursery rhymes (my son’s favorite is “Old MacDonald“) and flashing lights ($30, major retailers). Cloud B’s Gentle Giraffe on the Go Travel-Size Plush Sound Machine is a gift for both baby and parents. It helps baby sleep, especially on those long plane rides. The stuffed Giraffe On The Go helps recreate sleep time routines by bringing familiar soothing sounds while away from home. There are four sounds, including a “babbling brook” ($23, boutiques nationwide; see for locations). Another practical-yet-fun item for parents: The Designer Diner by Bella Tunno is a wipe-clean place mat on one side and a reusable chalk mat on the other and is perfect for restaurants and planes ($22, baby and kid boutiques, see for stores). Jojo Bump Bump by Silverlit Toys is a top-selling brand in France, and it’s no wonder. It’s a sleekly designed remote control car for little ones. Jojo Bump Bump comes with headlights and remote control carrot. After hitting a road block, Jojo spins and moves in another direction, until he hits too many obstacles and is ejected ($25, Walmart). 5 TO 10 YEARS OLD At this age especially, think about

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 41 ket aisles” to collect fruit, vegetables, meat and fish. By paying at the end of every turn, players get closer to winning ($15, specialty retailers). The Dollie & Me collection includes a doll and matching girls’ clothing. The outfits are sweet, and the 18-inch doll has some very holiday-appropriate dresses ($30 for doll; girl clothes $7 to $80, major department stores). Finally, some new books in this age category. “The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook (Junior Edition)” by David Borgenicht and Robin Epstein is a riot. From how to “survive a bad report card” to “time travel” to “being shipwrecked,” these three books provide endless entertainment ($20 for a boxed set, bookstores).

Girls and dolls: the Dollie & Me collection includes holiday dresses for a young girl and an 18-inch doll. the child’s personality when buying a gift, Young said. “The beauty of openended activities such as blocks, art supplies or dress-up is that they encourage active imagination,” Young said. “Imagination and intelligence are linked. We should encourage it whenever we can.” When girls begin dressing up, they don’t want to look like their friends. Enter Snap Caps interchangeable necklaces. Maddie Bradshaw is the 14-year-old president and designer. The jewelry is made of old-fashioned embellished bottle caps, which stemmed from an idea to decorate her locker with magnetic bottle caps ( For the wanna-be in all of us, Paper Jamz are affordable and innovative play instruments that provide an instant rock star experience. Technology allows circuitembedded paper, enabling you to play the thin, stringless guitars like a pro simply by touching the paper surface ($25, Walgreens and others). Shopping Cart Dash by Pressman Toys is a cute board game. Players take a moveable shopping cart and a shopping list and race along “supermar-

TEENS Board games are fun for the whole family, and the classics are being repackaged. But there are some new great new ones, such as Truth Be Told by Buffalo Games. It helps kids get to know their friends. One player is the host and plays a question card, “Truth Be Told, my favorite snack is... “ The Host writes a True Answer: pork rinds. All other players pretend to host and write bluff answers: pretzels, carrots, pickles. The host reads all answers aloud, and players guess the True Answer to score points ($25, major retailers). Tween girls love to journal, and Senario’s My Secret Circle gives them a special place to record their inner-

most thoughts. Some are calling it the “safe” Facebook. Users can create photo pages and scrapbook in a digital world, keeping everything private or sharing only with friends ($20, Target). Lunchbots are a cool way to take lunch to school. Think of a sleek, stainless steel box with a colorful lid, part of a trend steering away from plastic containers ($15, natural groceries nationwide; see for stores). Many companies are introducing new versions of old favorites, such as the OP skateboard by Bravo Sports, a nod to 1970s skateboarders with its long deck and big, soft cruiser wheels ($60, Walmart). Olivia + Joey just launched a new handbag line that teens love. Our favorite is the “Knight Life” hobo bag. Very stylish and hip ($98, Macy’s). If this article hasn’t sparked your gift imagination, “Ask,” Young said. “You can still keep the element of surprise if you ask questions about broad topics and subjects kids like, rather than a specific gift suggestion.” The most important person to treat this holiday season? You. “Don’t forget to treat yourself to something,” said Lyss Stern, CEO of “As parents, we are so busy with taking care of gifts for the kids, our spouses, the grandparents, cousins and teachers that we forget about ourselves.”

Attention shoppers: players race along supermarket aisles to collect groceries in the Shopping Cart Dash board game.


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 Hands-free chat using an iPhone via the Belkin Tunebase.

Gifts for

Gear Heads Auto enthusiasts will get a charge out of these gifts Green Earth Technologies. It consists of five eco-friendly products made from plant oils: organic glass cleaner, brake dust shield, hydrophobic car wash, tire shine and wheel uto aficionados tend to be a breed apart cleaner ($20, auto, hardware and big box from mere motorists. No, motor oil does stores; Motorists who want to not course through their veins, but their maintain the showroom shine of their rides interest in all things vehicular runs much deep- also will appreciate Meguiar’s complete care gift kit ($20, auto and hardware er than that of the average driver. Tracking down gifts for a car-loving friend or stores; Why not give an exotic sports car for a relative can be a lot of fun. There are more pittance? Upgrade his or her computer nicely designed, imaginative products more mouse with a racier model — a Porsche widely available — from auto shops and tech 911, to be exact. The Motormouse is a 2.4g stores to the finest jewelry counters in town. Here’s a look at a few gifts guaranteed to make wireless mouse that’s a strikingly detailed replica of the iconic coupe ($50, motortheir hearts race this holiday season. The ultimate high-tech auto gizmo of the Another gift sure to appeal to enthuseason has to be an electric car, like the stylishsiasts who can’t yet afford their dream ly aerodynamic Nissan Leaf. Delivering true “plug and play� operation with zero emissions, cars is the Soundracer, which can make the Leaf promises as much as a 100-mile range even an old beater at least sound like a on a charge. It includes internet and smart Ferrari. The device plugs into a 12-volt power phone connectivity and a navigation system point and replicates the roar of a sports car enthat can show the location of nearby charging gine through the car’s audio system via a built stations ($32,780, select markets in Decemin FM transmitter. Soundracer works in perfect ber). sync with the vehicle’s actual accelerations and decelerations ($40, auto accessory retailers, A less costly gift for environmentally scious auto buffs is the nifty car care kit from Those who like to — literally — wear their affection for autos on their sleeves will enjoy a pair of car-themed cufflinks: charming miniature shift knobs, tires, spark plugs, dashboard gauges, headlamps and road signs ($45 to $425, department stores and Get his wardrobe running: automotive Leading the race to build a better travel mug is the aptly named Brugo, designed to elimicufflinks. JIM GORZELANY CTW FEATURES




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nate spills and scalded lips. A “tip and cool� mode allows users to transfer small amounts of too-hot take-out beverages to a temperature-controlled chamber, where it cools down a gulp at a time ($15 to $20, coffee shops and specialty stores; Making driving safer and more convenient is the Belkin Tunebase with Hands-Free, which allows iPhone owners to conduct hands-free conversations through their car stereo systems. The “Direct� version ($70) connects through an auxiliary audio input jack (found on later model cars), while the “FM� model ($100) transmits to an unused FM radio station. It also streams music stored on an iPhone and allows users to charge up to two mobile devices while en route (electronics retailers; Another hands-free calling adapter — this one using Bluetooth wireless connectivity — serves as a speaker phone, a personal safety device and a wireless “leash� to prevent motorists from losing their cell phones. ZOMM attaches to a keychain and will flash, vibrate and even sound an alarm if an owner walks away from his or her phone ($80, Best Buy; Speed enthusiasts can document and share their vehicular adventures thanks to the GoPro HD Motorsports HERO camera. It mounts to a helmet or dashboard and records first-person high-definition video or a succession of still photos. It can store up to nine hours of footage on a 32GB SD memory card (not included). ($300, auto supply retailers;

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The Tablets APPLE IPAD

SAMSUNG GALAXY TAB Price TBD This Android-powered iPad comWhile Apple's iPad doesn't solely fall into the eReader category, this petitor, equipped with the Readers Hub e-reading application, comes tablet computer features the iBook application fresh with loads straight from another galaxy. Its digital library can be accessed usof content ready for download via ing the 7-inch touch screen with the iBookstore. Also available multi-touch zoom. Samsung also through the store are enhanced unleashes multimedia content to books with words, pictures, and audio and video, which allows read- entertain readers, who can share ers to more deeply experience con- reactions via videoconferences with the Galaxy Tab's 3-megapixel tent. The app also bookmarks pages and stores notes so readers camera. won't lose their place or thoughts. $499 to $829


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Un-Covered The best gadgets for the tech-friendly bookworm on your list


BARNES & NOBLE NOOK $149.99 The entire collection of up to 1,500 eBooks stored on a nook can AMAZON KINDLE be browsed with quick swipes of a fin$139.99 ger via a 3.5-inch touch screen. The latest generation of the Kindle Nook features makes it easy to lighten the load in a include lending backpack or briefcase. Owners can eBooks to carry up to 3,500 eBooks in the defriends for a vice - which weighs less than a typical 14-day period, paperback novel - and stay on the go Sudoku and for nearly a month (with Wi-Fi off) on chess games a single charge. Although the new and access to Kindle has a crisper display and dou- exclusive conble the storage of the previous modtent whenever el, it's nearly 2 ounces lighter. And you visit a because the page turning mechanism Barnes & Noble is 20 percent faster, readers can easi- bookstore. The ly rush to the juiciest part of a novel. 11.6-ounce device also can double as an MP3 AMAZON KINDLE DX player. $379.99 BORDERS KOBO EREADER Get all of the features of the Kindle, globally, on a larger 9.7-inch dis- $139.99 play. Readers can share their favorite At just under 8 ounces, the Kobo passages with friends via Facebook eReader is perfect for a little light and Twitter from home or abroad in reading. Flexible fonts display on its 6-inch screen, and readers can pemore than 100 countries.

ruse content with a comfortable grasp thanks to the device's quilted back. This lightweight device, now with Wi-Fi, still carries up to 1,000 titles and allows readers to turn up to 8,000 pages before recharging. The cover image of a reader's current book displays on the screen even when the eReader is off, just like a print novel.

BEBOOK NEO $249.99 BeBook Neo users select books from third-party eBook stores and can decide for themselves from which retailer they'd like to purchase a book. Google or Wikipedia can be accessed through Neo's Wi-Fi connection, and its freescale processor allows fast browsing. Readers also can sketch and mark up texts thanks to the eReader's WACOM touch panel technology.

ALEX EREADER $399 Readers also can access titles from various eBook vendors via the Alex eReader. This device ups content interactivity by enabling readers to explore hyperlinks embedded in the eBooks. Alex's browser brings readers the entire web in true color on its 3.5inch touch screen while the 6-inch screen above displays the eBook content.

CRUZ READER $199.99 Readers can view the story just about however they'd like on the Cruz Reader's full-color 7-inch touch screen. With just a rotation of the device, content switches from portrait to landscape orientation. The e-reader features a web browser and Wi-Fi and also can be docked to function as a digital picture frame.


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

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Accessory Revolution For every iPad out there, there’s a panoply of accessories available PHIL BAKER CTW FEATURES


t goes without saying that 2010 is the year of the iPad. Despite the recession-y conditions in which it was unveiled, Apple's new tablet device has been the most successful product launch in the company's history even bigger than the

movies to reading newspapers, magazines and books. Just like the iPhone, dozens of companies, iniPhone launch just a few cluding Apple itself, are years ago. Tech-industry an- rolling out accessories to alyst iSuppli expects nearly jump on the iPad phe13 million iPads to ship to nomenon. There are cases consumers by the end of to protect the device from the year, an amazing 82 scratches and screen breakpercent increase from pre- age, devices to prop it up dictions it made as recently for watching movies and as April. typing, and some gadgets that do both. Here's a surIn spite of skepticism vey of some of the most inabout what the device can teresting accessories availdo, iPad buyers are finding all sorts of uses, from e-mail able for the iPad this holiand watching first-run day season:

APPLE OFFICIAL iPad Case Many of those who stood in line and bought their iPad the day it went on sale also got the Apple iPad Case to protect their precious purchase. It's a skintight reinforced microfiber sleeve with a folding cover that adds little bulk but plenty of functionality. The cover protects the screen and when folded around creates a stand that props up the iPad at different angles for either watch-

ing movies and browsing photos or for using the onscreen keyboard. While not as attractive as some of the other options, it's cleverly designed to almost become a part of the iPad. In fact it's designed to remain on it all of the time (partly because it's near impossible to remove). Price: $39, and Apple Retail Stores.

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 45 APPLE OFFICIAL ACCESSORIES Apple also offers a number of accessories that add more utility to the iPad. While it makes a great device for viewing photos, the fact that it lacks both an actual camera and a USB port make it difficult to import images directly to the iPad. Apple's iPad Camera Connection Kit is the solution. It consists of two small adapters that each plug into the charging connector at the bottom. One has a USB port, and the other a slot for an SD card that lets you move your images quickly onto the iPad. Price: $29, and Apple Retail Stores. If you do serious writing you'll want Apple's iPad Keyboard Dock. The on-screen keyboard is good for a paragraph or two, but it's difficult to do cut and past and precisely move the cursor around. The aluminum keyboard has a built-in dock that holds the iPad erect and charges it at the same

Brenthaven's 5-in-1 iPad Case

time. You can also use it to connect the iPad to a TV. Price: $69, and Apple Retail Stores. IPAD CASES The Waterfield Suede Jacket is a lightweight sleeve with a small pocket for headphones and small accessories. It's the least intrusive way to carry your iPad, but protecting it against drops is not part of the jacket's design. Waterfield, which manufactures all of its products in the USA, also has cases for Kindles, iPods and iPhones. Price: $25, Griffin Technology's Elan Passport Folio is a durable folio that opens like a book to access the iPad. It's made of leather-look textured vinyl with a suede lining and contains pockets for business cards and papers. Price: $49.99, to purchase and find retailers. Brenthaven's 5-in-1 iPad Case provides a hard shell for protection, a horizontal viewing stand for watching movies, a typing stand, and a handle to secure the iPad while reading. Price: $59.95, Incase offers a Convertible Book Jacket that works much like Apple's case, though it carries a little more bulk. It's

Griffin Technology's Elan Passport Folio made of a heavy black, leather-like vinyl with a microsuede lining, and, like the Apple case, functions as a stand with adjustable viewing positions when its cover is flipped around the back. Price: $59.95, The iSkin Vu Case is a shell that combines soft rubber material with hard transparent plastic to envelope the edges and back of the iPad. It comes in variety of colors and has a door at the bottom that opens for charging. Price: $64.99, to purchase and find retailers.

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IPAD STANDS If you're going to use the iPad for reading you'll likely want a way to prop it up, since it's quite a bit heavier than eReaders such as the nook and Kindle. (Said weight and the difficulty of reading in bright sunlight are two of the few criticisms of the iPad, and one reason why the sales of eBook readers like the Kindle continue to be robust.) The Twelve South Compass offers an ultra-portable solution to prop up an iPad on a desk or, for the jet-setter, on an airplane tray. It's a compact folding stand made out of aluminum that angles the iPad for viewing or typing. It's beautifully constructed of

The Twelve South Compass

aluminum, much like the iPad itself, and comes with its own carrying case. The best part? It folds down to the size of a 6-inch ruler. Price: $39.99, to find retailers. Levenger's Thai Pad is a lightweight wedgeshaped silk cushioned pillow especially designed to prop up your iPad ... or Kindle, nook or other eReader. It sits on your lap and positions the device at the perfect angle. Works great while sitting in a chair or in your bed. Price: $39, to purchase or find retailers. OTHER IPAD ACCESSORIES Popular new consumer electronics don't just help the economy by getting people spending, they also put new businesses on the map — Modulr being one of them. The Louisville, Ky.-based company sprung up and into the iPad acces-

ModulrCase sories market with its ModulrCase line of products that includes a plastic iPad with a removable front cover, a desk stand and a wall-mount (think following along recipes while you cook). Available individually or as a package, the cases allow you to use the iPad on the go, at a desk, or even mounted on the wall. Price: $19 to $59 individually/ $99 package, The Cradle iPad Lap Desk is an attractive accessory used while sitting in a chair. It's constructed of sustainable bamboo plywood and has a turntable built into the top for rotating your iPad between landscape and portrait modes. A


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soft cushion on its bottom rests on your lap. Price: $58, To keep it all together, grab the Incase Travel Kit Plus. It's designed to carry an iPad, keyboard, cables and other accessories in one organized case with pockets and holders for everything. Price: $59.95, for retailers.

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 47

Get Personal Finding personalized gifts for your favorite people DANIELLE CADET CTW FEATURES


rends come and go, but the hallmark of a great gift remains the same: it’s personal. The gift that goes down in history, the one they’ll remember, is often the one that distinctively captures someone’s passions, taste and style. These days personalization goes way beyond old-school monogrammed shirts and towels. Think flirty flip-flops designed with interchangeable straps

that Velcro on and off, to reflect a mood or a whim. A favorite phrase, icon or nickname creatively placed on a protective cover for an electronic device. A prepster’s initials or name, emblazoned on a plastic plate. “With personalization comes a sense of pride, and that’s a gift that everybody wants,” said Robyn Spizman, gift expert and founder of Thanks to technology, it’s simpler than ever to purchase a gift that’s per-

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I See Personal/Page 48

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Personal From Page 47

sonalized with a name or initials. “The online world has taught retailers a lot more about their customers, and is making it easier than ever to give to customers what they want,” said Claire Hamilton, retail trend analyst at WGSN, a London-based trend forecasting firm. “The natural outcome of that is to actually offer more personalization services.” The purchase of a personalized gift demands serious thought. Take some time to consider the recipient’s personality. “You want to start looking at their interests: children, pets, their favorite colors, their style,” said Spizman. She advises purchasing a present the recipient is sure to use. “When you think personalization you want to think about the personal use of a gift. Make sure the person is going to enjoy it,” she said. Pigeonholing friends may not be a polite practice most times of the year, but when it comes to holiday gift giving, it’s one of the keys to success. “When you know you’re buying a gift for a traveler, an entertainer, a music or sports lover, then you can really pinpoint the perfect gift,” Spizman said. Monogramming is a classic personalizing detail that never seems to go out of style. “People like to see their names,” said Roseanne Morrison, fashion director for trend forecaster Doneger Group, New York. “The more personalization that’s involved, the more it makes someone feel like this [gift] is designed for me.” The trend is to bigger monograms with fresh fonts, styles and twists on tradition. And be selective about the item you choose to monogram. “Monogramming clothes is totally out,” said Jess Zaino, celebrity stylist and former co-host of the Style Network’s “Modern Girl’s Guide to Life.” She sug-

gests monogramming a small item and pairing it with a useful, related gift. Here are some bright ideas for holiday gifts that might be perfect for someone you know. If they’re not, you won’t have to look far to find the perfect gift. This season, personalization is everywhere. Lindsay Phillips’ Switchflops are fashionable flip-flops that can be customized to individual taste with a monogram button, name or favorite phrase, or a message embroidered on the strap. More than 70 styles of straps, attached with Velcro, can be changed out on a whim. The line has been expanded to include customizable ballet flats, clogs and accessories. Zaino suggests pairing a pair of the flip-flops with a beach bag full of vacation goodies. “It’s so much more thoughtful when you take the person into consideration without being cheesy or tacky,” Zaino said ($30 and up, department and specialty stores; A personalized cover for the proud new owner of an iPad, Kindle or new smartphone can add to their techno-joy and help them stand out in a crowd. Since so many people have these devices, “the more that you can do to create that level of originality makes it special,” Morrison said. Power Support USA offers a range of products aimed to protect and personalize wireless devices. Graphically smart City Cases star iconic images from cities around the globe, perfect for a globetrotter wannabe. Or, create a custom design by uploading original art or choosing designs from their library and adding words and effects for a one-ofa-kind gift (custom designs about $50, electronics retailers nationwide;www.power Brightly colored melamine plates from La Plates are a big hit with celebrity parents, including the Obamas. Customers can choose design, background color, font style and color when creating their plates, which range in size from 7 inches (sold individu-

Above: A personalized blanket can go from crib to dorm room; from celebrity fave Butterscotch Blankees. Below: Switchflops from Lindsay Phillips can be tricked out with interchangeable straps on a whim. ally) to 10 inches (available in sets of four). The bright, fanciful plates are durable enough to withstand horseplay at a barbeque but elegant enough for an adult luncheon. ($22, specialty stores; ) Custom-monogrammed Butterscotch Blankees have been spied swaddling the babes of celebrity moms like Sarah Jessica Parker. Company founder Jodie Roth said her products make a longlasting gift that can follow the owner from crib to dorm room. The handmade blankets would make a great gift for a newborn, young child or parents who want to add flare to a nursery or bedroom. The handmade blankets range in size, style and color. ($125, specialty stores and boutiques). Personalized stationery is a classic gift. But for a new twist for a relative or friend who loves to wrap and give gifts try wrapping paper personalized with her name and special message. Custom gift wrap from online stationer Erin Condren can be imprinted with the message you choose — “Happy Birthday! With love from Grammie,” for example. “It’s a functional thing to give that is still so personal and so much fun,” Zaino said. “It will make them

smile every time they use it“(10-ft. length for $45). The “Everything Book,” a monthly calendar for tracking family activities, can be customized with a name and photo on the covers. It comes with matching personalized labels, tab stickers and note pads ($45, Monogram a leather wallet or a tote for a trendy friend or relative with simple tastes.

“There are people who just like to keep it simple but still want personal things that look beautiful,” said Morrison. And, to heck with trendmeisters who say monogrammed clothing is out, out, out. For those with a considerably larger gift budget, a wool or a fur coat with an understated initials inside “would be wonderful,” WGSN’s Clair Hamilton said.

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 49

Gifts for Grandma: Ditch slippers and give time instead LEANNE ITALIE ASSOCIATED PRESS


he world is a crazy busy, crazy big place for grandparents and grandkids looking to connect, so why not ditch the slippers for the holidays and focus on gifts grand-kin can enjoy together? Somewhere between cozy, affordable footwear and the other end of the spending spectrum — grandparent-grandchild cruises — lies a wealth of gifts, projects and memory-making activities both can enjoy. According to a Pew Research Center survey last year, 80 percent of people 65 and older have grandchildren, as do 51 percent of people between 50 and 64. Overall, more than half of grandparents surveyed said they most value extra time with grandchildren and other relatives as a positive in

getting older. Whether they live far away or are on-hand for day-to-day care of their grandkids, grandparents likely outgrew the ubiquitous tie-andslipper gift tradition long ago. So grandchildren willing to give the gift of quality time as part of their holiday offerings this year can try one of these ideas: HIKING, BIRD WATCHING Walking sticks and canes have come a long way in durability and style for a stroll around the neighborhood or hardier hikes. Build the perfect one at fashionablecanes .com, which offers a broad price range, then suggest a regular weekly adventure outdoors. For extra fun, wrap up a handheld GPS device and get the grandparents into geocaching, a hightech treasure hunt. A new walking stick would come in handy.

How about a pair of binoculars for bird watching, or a kit to build a birdhouse? has links to bird books, plans for houses, bird feeder kits and premade versions. has plenty for genealogy projects.

membership, or use your family’s membership and schedule a movie night with the grandparents, switching off who gets to choose the movie. Pick up a fancy DVD box set of your grandparents’ old favorites and let them be your guide through yesteryear as you watch the movies together. Declare a game night. Teach a new board game to a grandparent or track down a fancy version of a favorite. Jonathan Adler has a needlepoint and acrylic backgammon set in green, blue and white at has an affordable playing card set in an engravable silver plate box and two decks of plastic cards with silver-colored backs.

PRIMPING, PEARLS If grandma likes to primp, put together a makeover kit in a bag filled with her favorite cosmetics (ask mom which ones). Throw in SNAIL MAIL, PHOTOS the new “InStyle UltiPresent a grandpar- mate Beauty Secrets” ent who lives some dis- for tips and shortcuts. tance away with a Or buy a perfume-makstack of homemade ing kit to create a sigstationery in a fancy nature scent. Bramblebox with some has kits and picked stamps from samplers for DIY the post office. Include scents, soaps and otha declaration with a er toiletries. gold seal that you’ll Looking to spend a write back. Or buy fan- little more? Create cy writing paper and matching grandmothadd a special pen. er-granddaughter pearl For older kids, offer necklaces or other to sit with a grandpar- pearl jewelry at the ent to label and You tize precious hardcopy can learn about pearl family photos. You can grading, shop by price, help ship them out in and choose your own e-mail to relatives or colors of pearls, along print multiple copies with clasps and chains. for snail mailing. Or suggest working KITCHEN MEMORIES together on the family MOVIE HOUNDS, tree, presenting a spe- GAMERS Bang around in the cial binder as a gift. Spring for a Netflix kitchen learning a

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grandparent’s favorite recipes. Offer to write down the ones that never made it out of grandma’s head. Littler kids can make a recipe box. Older kids can collect the family history of beloved desserts and savory dishes and put together a cookbook that a grandparent can regift the following year. Baking cookies is always fun, but so are newfangled sandwich, pasta and ice cream makers. Cake molds and cookie cutters come in all shapes and sizes for less expensive gifts. Fred and Friends makes a silicone cake mold in the shape of sandwich bread. Spread a filling like peanut butter and jelly between layers for a giggle, or choose the company’s cake mold in the shape of a peace sign. Fred also makes high-kicking Ninjabread Men cookie cutters for a good boy gift.

ONLINE Canes: Geocaching equipment: Guide to bird watching: Family tree album binders: Perfume-making kits: Create pearl jewelry: Jonathan Adler needlepoint backgammon set: Things Remembered playing cards: Fred and Friends Cakewich mold: Fred and Friends Ninjabread Men cookie cutters: Fred and Friends peace sign cake mold:


Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

This year's best holiday gift? Inspiration to stay healthy obesity continue to dominate the headlines, we’re starting to become more aware of the importance of encouraging children to he holidays present the op- practice healthy habits. portunity to show your apToday, an estimated 17 percent preciation for others. But of children between ages 2 and 19 have you ever thought about usare obese, according to the Cening your gifts — particularly for ters for Disease Control. Here are your children — as encouragement to engage in healthy living? a few gift ideas that can help your • The holidays can present the op- children become more active and avoid becoming part of that numportunity for you to provide ber: healthy encouragement through • For those who live in colder the benevolent act of gift giving. And as concerns about childhood regions, it can be difficult to find





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Encouraging outdoor activities with gifts like snow shoes or fishing equipment can help keep kids active and healthy. ways to get outside and exercise in the winter. The holidays present a wonderful time for you to purchase your children equipment that will encourage them to get out. Snowshoeing is an activity that people of all fitness levels can enjoy and snowshoes cost roughly the same as a nice pair of sneakers. Snowshoeing can allow a person to burn twice as many calories as regular walking, according to Walk About fitness magazine. • Hunting and fishing offer a great excuse to get outside. If you have experience in either, you could buy your child some gear and offer to teach him or her a few lessons. If you don’t have experience, check on community education programs or classes offered through outdoor stores in your area if your child is interested. • If you live in an area that allows for it, buying an all-terrain vehicle that encourages your child to explore the great outdoors may also be an option. Among other things, they could use the vehicle to assist them in hunting and fishing expeditions. The Polaris Ranger RZR 170 Youth UTV model is the world’s first side-by-side vehicle for youth. Children 13 and

older can drive this vehicle, which allows parents to set a maximum speed. It also comes with two youth helmets. • Video games are often seen as part of the problem when it comes to children’s lack of activity, but today’s systems are beginning to offer games that are specifically aimed at improving fitness. Systems with motion sensors can allow children to be led through exercise programs or guide them through yoga lessons. Others, such as sports or dancing games, also have an active component. • With the increasing popularity of cooking shows for both adults and children, you may find that your child is interested in learning how to navigate the kitchen. Take the opportunity to buy them a cookbook featuring healthy recipes or to enroll them in a community cooking class. When picking a gift for your child, make sure it’s something that he or she is interested in, as you’ll want to make sure your gift is put to good use. In the process, you may also be able to get to know your child a little better and tailor family outings around his or her active interests.

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 51

Luxury on a shoe string Gifts to pamper and indulge without going broke

CTW Photos

Color-matched to his favorite car: Bianci Pro Racing watches. gram, author and founder of “The biggest headache people create for themselves is being acutely aware of how or years, the unusual “fantasy” much someone else spends and feelgifts offered in the Neiman-Mar- ing they have to match them dollar cus Christmas catalog have set for dollar,” says Ingram. “Spend a standard for extraordinary extrava- what’s comfortable for you.” gance. A Mermaid suit with faux pearl Do a little sleuthing as you shop top and swimming lessons (2003, and you can find items that ooze in$10,000). A private concert with Eldulgence in a way that belies their ton John (2005, $1.5 million). A Dal- modest price tags. Spending wisely las Cowboys end zone in your backdoes not mean you’re a cheapskate. yard (2008, $500,000). After all, when Santa makes a list, Even with the economic swoon, the even he checks it twice. That’s a techover-the-top tradition continues. nique smart shoppers will put to And if few of us can afford to begood use this year. stow a customizable cupcake car up“Holiday shopping is a lot like food on our beloved (2009, $25,000), we shopping,” says Ingram. “Make a list, can afford the small indulgence. For categorize what you’ll buy and see if those willing to invest some time to there are discounts or coupons,” she search, the options are virtually end- suggests. If you have a credit card or less. store card that offers rewards points, Of course, it’s not the amount of stockpile them and use them to supmoney you spend that makes a gift plement your budget for holiday gifts. luxurious and indulgent — it’s how “Maybe you received gift cards last the gift makes the recipient feel. The year you haven’t used,” adds Ingram. best gifts make someone feel appreci- “I’m not saying re-gift them, but you can use them to offset your spending ated and pampered, says Leah In-



when doing this year’s holiday shopping. That’s your money,” she said. “Spend it!“ A sumptuous throw in buttery velvet or fabulous, fuzzy faux fur, suitable for just about anyone on your list, will elicit a gasp at first touch. A kicky zebra-print blanket or a rich, red throw trimmed with exuberant pom-poms would bring haute holiday cheer to the couch or work just as well in the car. ($45, Pier 1). Organic and fair trade have been shopping buzz words for some time now, and although they often indicate higher cost (for a good cause), that’s not always the case. Maggie’s Organics fair-trade certified organic cotton garments will impress the eco-minded ladies on your list without nuking your pocket. Maggie’s hoodies and wraps are soft and slouchy with fashion-forward details that give them life beyond the yoga studio ($20 and up, specialty stores; see maggiesorganics .com for retailers) . Accessories are among the ultimate

Maggie’s Organics fair-trade certified organic cotton garments.

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I See LUXURY/Page 52

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

clip-on peacocks, or a bauble that luxuries. Here, it’s possible to live complements the personality of your large while spending relatively little hostess or officemate. Handblown, to delight your loved ones. A nice handpainted beauties by Angela watch, much like a nice car, catches many a masculine eye. Roberto Bian- Moore come packaged in a clear box, no wrapping required ($12, specialty ci lets you have a little fun with the stores). new Pro Racing series: impeccable Swiss chronograph watches inspired An ornament alone makes an enby the mechanics and color palettes gaging smaller gift, or select a stunof fine automobiles. Select the one ning decoration as the starting point that best matches his ride — or the for a collection. One way to create a wheels he covets (from $330, deseemingly extravagant gift is to partment stores and bianciwatchchoose a theme, then select Quirky handpainted eral smaller, less-expensive bead bracelets from Angela items you can package toMoore celebrate the season, gether, explains gift guru pets, animal prints or Ingram. Indulge their even sushi in a chic, inner child with a conversation-starting stack of colorful way ($50-$60, speboxes to unwrap cialty stores). or an overflowing basket of Ornaments, fun. Whether the accessories it’s coffee or of the season, cocktails, cookare another great ing or gardening, way to bestow an the spa or the elegant, indulgent beach, thematic gift without emptypossibilities are ing your wallet. For endless, and you right around $10, can supplement choose something Handpainted Christmas with some edible rich with glamorous ornament by Angela Moore. treats if you’re so details, like feathery

Handpainted bracelet by Angela Moore

inclined. Holiday goodies are a luxury nearly everyone is thrilled to receive. Qi doesn’t deal in fantasy gifts (solar-powered, diamond-encrusted socks, anyone?) but it does offer a lovely assortment of indulgent cashmere: luxurious hats and gloves and

soft, sassy sweaters for less than you might expect ($50 for gloves, cardigans $130 and up, specialty stores; see for retailers). So start your list, compile your gift cards, and shop assured. This holiday, luxury lives.

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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 53

The Year's Best Children's Books B

ooks open a world of discovery in ways even the coolest toys can't achieve. This season, tempt a kid to turn off the TV and find an adventure in words and pictures on a printed page. These acclaimed titles were winners or finalists for some of the most esteemed awards in children's literature for 2010. 1. "Going Bovine" by Libba Bray (Delacorte Books for Young Readers, 2009) $17.99 Printz Award for Young Adult Literature

3. "Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice" by Phillip Hoose (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2009) $19.95 Newbery Honor

7. "Mare's War" by Tanita S. Davis (Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2009) $16.99 Coretta Scott King Award Honor Book

4. "The Lion & the Mouse" by Jerry Pickney $16.99 (Little, Brown and Company for Young Readers, 2009) Caldecott Medal 5. "Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves, Deputy U.S. Marshal," by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson (Carolrhoda Books, 2009) $17.95 Coretta Scott King Award


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9. "Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors" by Joyce Sidman (Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, 2009) $16.00 Caldecott Honor 10. "The Most True Adventures of Homer P. Figg" by Rodman Philbrick, (The Blue Sky Press, 2009) $16.99 Newbery Honor

6. "The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate" by Jacqueline Kelly (Henry Holt and Company, 2009) $16.99 Newbery Honor

2. "When you Reach Me" by Rebecca Stead (Wendy Lamb Books, 2009) $15.99 Newbery Medal

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8. "Where the Mountain Meets the Moon" by Grace Lin (Little, Brown and Company Books for Young Readers, 2009) $16.99 Newbery Honor


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of a BUY ONE ONE FREE perfect GET oz CARAMEL new pair 16 MOCHA McCAFE® Ounces refer to average contents filled. Expires 01/31/11. Valid for product of equal or lesser value. Valid only at participating McDonald’s. Prices may vary. Not valid with any other offer, discount, coupon or combo meal. Cash value 1/20 of 1 cent. Limit one coupon per person per visit. Tax may apply. Price of required purchase posted on menu board. Coupon may not be transferred, auctioned, sold, copied or duplicated in any way or transmitted via electronic media. Valid when product served. May not be valid for custom orders. ©2010 McDonald’s. LIMIT ONE COUPON PER PERSON PER VISIT. VALID 11/14/10 THROUGH 1/31/11

HOLIDAY GIFT CARDS AVAILABLE ~ Perfect gifts for everyone!



Expires 01/31/11. Valid for product of equal or lesser value. Valid only at participating McDonald’s. Prices may vary. Not valid with any other offer, discount, coupon or combo meal. Cash value 1/20 of 1 cent. Limit one coupon per person per visit. Tax may apply. Price of required purchase posted on menu board. Coupon may not be transferred, auctioned, sold, copied or duplicated in any way or transmitted via electronic media. Valid when product served. May not be valid for custom orders. ©2010 McDonald’s. LIMIT ONE COUPON PER PERSON PER VISIT. VALID 11/14/10 THROUGH 1/31/11

Both Wal-marts and the Outlet Mall locations open Black Friday at midnight for early/overnight shoppers!




Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

And the Oscar goes to... Top 10: Best Pictures on DVD and Blue-ray TANIESHA ROBINSON CTW FEATURES


bumper crop of 10 films, rather than the traditional five, vied for best picture honors at this year's Academy Awards. There was a lot to take in, from the riveting war scenes in "The Hurt Locker" to the tender animated antics in "Up," where an 8year-old Wilderness Explorer and a bunch of helium balloons inadvertently hijack an elderly widower. No wonder judges had difficulty narrowing the field. Every one's a winner. 1. Avatar (20th Century Fox) $21.99, two-disc DVD/Blu-ray com6. Inglourious Basterds (The Webo instein Company) $21.49 2. The Blind Side (Warner Bros.) DVD/$19.99 Blu-ray $18.49 DVD/$25.99 Blu-ray 7. Precious: Based on the Novel 3. District 9 (Sony Pictures) 'Push' by Sapphire (Lionsgate) $20.49 $20.49 DVD/$21.49 Blu-ray DVD/$20.99 Blu8. A Serious Man (Focus Fearay tures) $21.29 DVD/25.49 Blu-ray 4. An Education 9. Up (Walt Disney) $17.99, four(Sony Pictures disc DVD/Blue-ray combo Classics) $19.49 10. Up in the Air (Paramount) DVD/$24.49 Blu$12.99 DVD/24.49 Blu-ray ray 5. Winner: The Hurt Locker (Summit Entertainment) $19.49 DVD/$20.99 Blu-ray

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 55

Homemade gifts from the kitchen tive paper at a craft or scrapbook store. Roll it into a cone and tape it shut at the seam. Add ribbon or other decorations uttery chocolate cookie dough and then fill the cone with candy. with chocolate chunks, nuts and • Think outside the cardboard box. marshmallows. Creamy caramels Consider packaging your gifts in a simwith apple cider and warm spices. These ple wooden box with a festive bow tied are just a taste of some of the irresistible around it. Visit your local craft store for sweets you could be gifting this holiday interesting containers to help you break season. free of the typical cardboard variety. Homemade holiday gifts deserve spe• Take and bake. A ready-to-bake treat cial presentations, but these finishing such as North Pole Cookie Dough is the touches don't have to mean a lot of extra perfect hostess gift. Consider presenting time or money. Break out the crafting it in disposable pint-sized ice cream consupplies, hit up a vintage shop or ventainers. You can find them online or simture online to gather an inspired collecply ask for a few from your local ice tion of packaging materials. With a few cream shop. Just don't forget to add a simple tips, you can create a memorable festive tag with baking instructions. presentation worthy of the sweet, but• Be sure to label. Use festive gift tags tery goodness inside. and include the recipe for your friends • Create a candy cone. To package and family. small, individually-wrapped candies such I See Homemade/Page 56 as Spiced Apple Caramels, find some fesARA CONTENT




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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

Spiced Apple Caramels Makes about 75 caramels Ingredients: 2 cups apple cider 2 /3 cup heavy cream 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon apple pie spice (If you cannot find apple pie spice, substitute 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg and 1/4 teaspoon allspice.) 1 /2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 11/2 cups sugar 1 /4 cup light corn syrup 1 /2 cup (one stick) butter, cubed Freshly ground cinnamon or course sea salt (optional)

Directions: Pour cider into small saucepan and simmer over medium heat until reduced to 1/3 cup; approximately 35 to 40 minutes. Set aside to cool. Line 8-inch square pan with buttered parchment paper or aluminum foil. In small bowl, combine heavy cream, salt, apple pie spice, cinnamon and reduced cider; set aside. In large, heavy-bottom saucepan, combine sugar and corn syrup. Cook over low heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Insert candy

thermometer and simmer until syrup reaches 234 degrees. Remove from heat, remove thermometer and very slowly whisk in cream mixture (mixture will foam and may spatter). Add cubed butter and stir or whisk until cream and butter are fully incorporated. Return pan to heat, reinsert thermometer and cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until temperature reaches 250 degrees. Remove from heat and pour caramel into prepared pan; let mixture cool slightly, then sprinkle with freshly ground cinnamon or sea salt, if desired. Cool completely at room temperature or refrigerate until set. Once set, remove caramel from pan lifting out by parchment paper or foil. Cut caramel into 3/4inch squares. Wrap each piece in small wax paper square, twisting at each end. Store caramels in airtight container in cool place or refrigerate up to two weeks.

North Pole Cookie Dough Makes three "pints" of dough or two dozen cookies Ingredients: 1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips 1 2/3 cups flour 1 /3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 11/4 teaspoons baking soda 1 /4 teaspoon salt 1 cup (two sticks) butter, softened 1 /2 cup dark brown sugar, packed 1 /2 cup sugar 11/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 2 large eggs 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks 1 cup roasted almonds or toasted walnuts, roughly chopped 11/2 cups mini marshmallows

Directions: Place 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips in microwave-safe dish. Microwave 30 seconds on high, stir and continue to microwave in 10- to 20-second intervals, stirring after each, until chocolate is melted and smooth. Set bowl aside and cool to room temperature. In medium bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. In large bowl, beat butter and both sugars using electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add melted, cooled chocolate and vanilla, blend until fully incorporated. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour mixture slowly; mixing until incorporated. Fold in chocolate chunks, nuts and mini marshmal-

lows. Fill pint containers with cookie dough and refrigerate up to four days or freeze up to one month. When giving as a gift, attach following baking instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Drop dough by rounded tablespoons, or using small cookie scoop, onto parchment-lined baking sheets, about 1 inch apart. Flatten dough slightly using back of spoon. Bake 10-12 minutes, until edges are lightly cracked but centers are still soft. Remove from oven and cool slightly on baking sheet before transferring cookies to wire rack to cool completely.

Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010 57

Wrap Stars Three of America's most talented gift wrappers offer the season's best presentation tips

CTW Photos

Extraordinary: celebrity wrapper Wanda Wen uses humble leaves, stones, twigs and even wax paper to create special packages

Story by Taniesha Robinson CTW Features

Expert gift wrappers innovate year after year, gathering inspiration for their fanciful creations from nature, the recycling bin - or the giftee himself. Take notes as three of today's top wrappers share thoughts behind their signature styles, tips for the not-so-crafty giftgiver and ideas for what to do with some of those odd-shaped items.

Wanda Wen Wanda Wen, author of "The Art of Gift Wrapping" (2010, Potter Craft) is co-founder of Soolip, the fashionable West Hollywood purveyor of fine paper. Wen isn't just a wrap star; she wraps for stars, including Will Smith, Charlize Theron and Halle Berry.


ift-wrapping should say a little about you and something about the person receiving the gift. Of course, I have my own collection of papers that I'm drawn to, but first I think of the person. Signature style: Organic and natural Must-have materials: twine, string, ribbon, pressed flowers, papers made of natural fibers like Thai unryu, kozo and Nepalese lokta On her style: I'm really inspired by nature and looking at ordinary material in a new, fresh, enlightened way. Her best wrap so far: a gift topped with a rock and twine. It makes me happy to in-

spire people to see such a common thing that is at our feet every single day and accentuate that. Favorite embellishments: stones or a bundle of twigs. Tricks of the trade: Always fold-in the exposed edges so there is a finished look to your gift. When you're done wrapping your gift, take your pointed finger and your thumb and pinch the edges. It creates a sharper edge. Wrapping odd shapes: To wrap a wine or champagne bottle, Wen suggests using thin paper such as tissue or translucent Thai unryu paper that will easily gather around the object.

Und nder der m myy ho hoodd tthhe here aaro here rose ro se ssuc uchh a cllat uc att tte ter ter I to tookk iitt to to JJac ackk to ac to ssee ee wwhha hat wa hat wass th thee ma matt tter tt er.. er They tuned it up quick and we let out a cheer… Now my sleigh has more power than eight reindeer!


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Thursday LOVELAND REPORTER-HERALD/Holiday Book November 25, 2010

On her style: I put a lot of effort into the ribbons and bows. I don't Ann Erickson, winner of the 2009 usually use the traditional bow; I "Scotch Brand Most Gifted Wrapuse the square-knot bow. per" award, encourages gift-givers Her best wrap so far: Probably to take a risk when they wrap. Here, when I wrapped everyone's gift in she shares tips on achieving a the same paper. It creates a nice unique style: cohesive look. Don't be afraid to do something Favorite embellishments: small unique because that's what people ornaments, candy, and small will remember. stuffed animals for kids Signature style: Ribboned and Tricks of the trade: Tease what's bowed inside the gift. Use a scarf as a ribMust-have materials: Simply de- bon if it goes with something inside signed paper, ribbons with wire the package. Also, tape paper to

Ann Erickson

Crown jewels: Gina Tepper swadles packages in gold wrap, scrapbook paper and ribbon, and tops them off with individual jewels and jeweled holiday ornaments. The packages coordinate with the gift bag.

The Toolbox The Incision

tape, the Scotch PopUp Tape dispenser may prove to be a Ho, Ho Hole helpful tool. To wrap Wen recommends a like a pro, however, hole puncher to make consider double-sided gift tags; string twine tape. Try foam tape to around gifts for deco- paste unconventional ration. toppers.

the adhesive doesn't dry right away.

Tepper uses mediumsized scissors - no more than six or seven inches - for detail. All three wrappers recommend the Scotch Gift Wrap Cut- Straight Talking When layering gift ter for easy, straight wraps, Tepper is sure edges. to have a pencil and Stick it to 'Em acrylic ruler at hand Tepper warns against to make sure pieces glue guns and recom- are even. mends glue sticks for layering effects. The The Tapeline sticks leave room for For gift wrappers who adjustments because use one-sided clear

Don't Forget... Your hands are the most important tool you have, Wen says. She has wrapped masterpieces with paper torn with her hands. But let's leave this technique to the pros.

the box before wrapping. Wrapping odd shapes: For a plant, find some beautiful paper or fabric and make a giant circle. Put the plant in the center and pull the material up and around the pot leaving the top exposed. Try cellophane underneath the wrapping material so it sticks up at the top.

Gina Tepper Gina Tepper, founder of and a freelance designer for 3M Scotch brand and others, instructs gift wrappers around the globe 24/7 through her website and newsletter. Her theory of design? Figure out the recipient's hobbies and passions: Tailor the gift to their different hobbies and interests. Try to find some kind of color or embellishments that matches the theme of their life. Signature style: Lofty layers Must-have materials: raffia, yarn, bans of color and any small thing of interest On her style: It’s the accents, the layering and the little extra touches that really makes someone take notice. My goal is to teach people to make beautiful and unique gift wrap designs that are easy to create using interesting household items and inexpensive materials found at local craft stores. Her best wrap so far: A gift for an 18-year-old tough guy that was warmly layered and decoratively tied with raffia and a wooden bead. I gave him that gift and he was stunned. It wasn't so much that it was beautiful, it was just the effort put into it. Favorite embellishments: Pictures, small ornaments Tricks of the trade: For a perfect package, cut the wrapping paper two inches wider than the box; use the box length plus the two ends to determine paper length. Leaving too much paper is a rookie wrapping error that leaves a package looking lumpy and uneven. Wrapping odd shapes: Print out a picture of the gift on cardstock and provide directions to the actual gift's secret location. Place the card in a small box and wrap it creatively.

Bright ideas: Wanda Wen wrapped a wine bottle in decorative paper and cotton balls, top; Gina Tepper framed charming holiday photos on the tops of gifts to indicate the recipients; to avoid wrapping a guitar, she enclosed a creative card (with directions on finding the gift) in a box.

Holiday Book  

Great gift ideas for this holiday season.